CHIPOLOPOLO assistant coach Beston Chambeshi says meeting Namibia, who are in the same group in the Africa Cup qualifiers, at the 2018 COSAFA is a good rehearsal for the team.
The COSAFA draw will see Zambia face Namibia in the quarter finals of the 2018 edition of the tournament.
Zambia also engages Namibia in September in the race for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations where they are both grouped with Mozambique and Guinea Bissau.
“We are meeting Namibia (at COSAFA) who are in our group in the Africa Cup qualifiers. It is a good rehearsal for us to see how we are going to handle them. It is a good challenge. All we have to do is see how we are going to play against them,” he said.
Earlier, Chambeshi alongside Chintu Kampamba and goalkeeper trainer Stephen Mwansa led the Chipolopolo boys through their paces as they got down to business for the local camp in Lusaka with a training session at National Heroes Stadium with 23 players reporting for duty.
According to fazfootball.com, the local camp is the first of many that coach Wedson Nyirenda will hold preceding the 2018 COSAFA Castle Cup that will be hosted in Limpopo Province of South Africa from May 27 to June 9.
Chambeshi clarified that the 30-member provisional squad summoned for duty was not final, with more players expected to be roped in before the final team is named next month.
He said that regulars that had been excluded like deputy captain Ziyo Tembo, Ernest Mbewe, Fackson Kapumbu, Simon Silwilmba, Alex Ng’onga and Toaster Nsabata were excused to afford other players an opportunity to be assessed at the national team.
“We have not dropped anyone. If you look at Ziyo, he has been around and competing at a high level. We just wanted to see other players,” he said.
The team will break camp on Wednesday to allow players to fulfil for their clubs’ Week Eight fixtures.
Nyirenda is still waiting for Bournwell Silengo, Solomon Sakala, Mischeck Chaila from Zesco United with Kabwe Warriors’ Thandi Mwape and Buildcon duo of Ngosa Sunzu and Chanda Mushili competing the list of players yet to join the team.
Zesco United’s teenage sensation Lameck Banda has been excused to be with the Under-20 nationality team that is currently in camp ahead of the May round of Africa Cup qualifiers.
Allan Chibwe (Power Dynamos), Ken Mumba (Red Arrows), Sebastian Mange (Green Eagles)
Thandi Mwape (Kabwe Warriors), Paul Banda (Lusaka Dynamos), Martin Kaonga (Nakambala Leopards), George Chilufya, Jimmy Nakena, (Zanaco), Bournwell Silengo, Solomon Sakala (Zesco United), Isaac Shamujompa (Buildcon), Boniface Sunzu (Green Eagles), Kebson Kamanga (Nkwazi), Allan Kamwanga junior (Power Dynamos)
Mischeck Chaila (Zesco United), Jack Chirwa (Green Buffaloes), Ngosa Sunzu (Buildcon), Clatous Chama, Mwila Phiri (Lusaka Dynamos), Larry Bwalya, Benson Sakala (Power Dynamos), Charles Zulu (Zanaco)
Martin Phiri (Zanaco), Lameck Banda (Zesco United), Youremember Banda (Green Buffaloes), Peter Nyirenda (Monze Swallows), Chanda Mushili, Ronald Kampamba (Nkana)