Strong Sables side assembles

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Zimbabwe’s national 15s rugby team Sables have entered their final leg of preparations for the tri-nations tournament, in Namibia as the team plots their passage to the 2015 Rugby World Cup finals in England.

Kevin Mapasure

A full complement of players called in to prepare for the tournament, that will feature the hosts and Kenya, assembled last night ahead of today’s departure for Bulawayo where they will make their final
preparations.

After weathering the storm that threatened to destablise the World Cup campaign, a sense of calm has returned to the camp.

The first full session will be held in Bulawayo tomorrow after two weeks of strength training and conditioning.

Team manager Losson Mtongwizo, who has survived spirited efforts by some players to force his ouster, yesterday said all was set for the team’s final leg of preparations ahead of the trip.

The series serves as a sparring session for the three rivals ahead of the real deal in next year’s World Cup qualifiers.

They will be joined by Madagascar who face Zimbabwe in the semifinals, while Namibia and Kenya tussle in the other semis.

“Everything is in place. We should have all players in the country by Friday evening and we will have the first full training session on Saturday morning,” said Mtongwizo.

The team will work on ball skills, lineouts, scrums, team set ups and combinations.

From the 29 players in camp, five will be dropped.
Assistant coach Cyprian Mandenge said preparations have not been this good in a long time.

“The preparations have been good. Everyone is working together as a collective force and all the players have been working hard pushing for places.”

Foreign-based players in the squad include Michael Passaportis, Martin Wolfenden and Hilton Mudariki, all based in England, as well as Graeme Logan, Royal Mwale and Linience Tambwera.

Sables squad: Jan Ferreira, Michael Passaportis, Martin Wolfenden, Graham Logan, Kingsley Lang, Jacques Leitao, Andrew Rose, Fortune Chipendo, Hilton Mudariki, Phillimon Machisa, Boyd Rouse, Linience Tambwera, Tichafara Makwanya, Daniel Hondo, Sean Moen, Simba Chirimuuta, Steven Hunduza, Gardner Nechironga, Kuda Chiwanza, Shayne Makombe,Lungile Tshuma, Tangai Nemandire, Nick Winwood, Pieter Joubert, Kevin Nqindi, Fidel Nyabusha, Jakov Jakov, Keith Murray, Royal Mwale.

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