The fourth edition of women’s football tournament at the All-Africa Games set for Brazzaville, Congo will feature the Black Queens of Ghana, who toiled to book their place in the competition after beating Zimbabwe 4-3 on aggregate.
Ghana extended their dominance over Zimbabwe, having previously beaten them in the group stage of the 2011 All-Africa Games in Maputo.
The Afican heavyweights will now be making their third successive appearance at the quadrennial competition since 2007.
With women’s football in Africa on the ascendancy; Cameroon’s world cup exploits being the prime example, the West African nation needs to produce a stellar performance at this competition to restore their top ranking on the continent after failing to make a mark in the last three editions of the Africa Women’s Championship after winning silver four years ago.
They will be joined by the likes of Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Senegal, defending Champions Cameroon, Ivory Coast and hosts Congo in the competition which is scheduled for September 4-18
“Qualifying for a tournament is different from playing in the tournament itself. We have not been that good in recent tournaments and I believe this is the time to sit up and make things change,” said Yusif Basigi.
Coach Basigi and his charges seek revenge as they aim to become a force to be reckoned with on the continental stage after a string of disappointing outings in recent years. And his side is in good position to win this year tournament as the squad is dominated with foreign based players.
“In order to win this tournament, I have solved the problem of condition which affects the performance of the team. That is why we chose Addis Ababa to work on those issues. We are full of confidence and just have to keep on with the good work. The girls are aware of what is at stake. We have to win by all means.” he stated.
The Queens were supposed to open their campaign against the Lady Pharaohs of Egypt before facing South Africa and title holders Cameroon. But due to the withdrawal of the Lady Pharaohs from the competition, Black Queens will now face South Africa in their opener.
“We are in the same group with Cameroon who eliminated us from 2016 Olympics qualification. So it tells you how difficult this competition is going to be. As for South Africa I can confidently say we will be able to put up a show with them now that Egypt have withdrawn,” coach Basigi told LadiesMarch.