Wolves forward ineligible for Warriors

Tawanda Chirewa

Zifa are making frantic efforts to help striker Tawanda Chirewa obtain a Zimbabwean passport to make him eligible for the 2026 Fifa World Cup Group C qualifiers against Lesotho and South Africa on Friday and Tuesday respectively.

Chirewa is one of 23 players camped in South Africa ahead of the matches that will be played in Johannesburg and Bloemfontein.

But his participation in Friday match in particular hangs in the balance with Zifa yet to secure the travel document.

Without a Zimbabwean passport the Wolves winger will not be allowed to face the Lesotho at Orlando Stadium on Friday.

Chirewa was born in the United Kingdom of Zimbabwean parents and holds a British passport.

Zifa are, however, optimistic they will be able to secure the passport in the next two days.

Chirewa has charmed the technical team after a couple of training sessions.

The coaches led by Jairos Tapera are said to be excited by what they have seen so far of Chirewa and are desperate to have him available for selection.

Chirewa made eight appearances for Wolves in the just-ended English Premier League season.

Other players born in the United Kingdom have all secured their passports.

In an interview with Zifa Online, Chirewa shared his optimism ahead of a potential Warriors debut.

He is excited to be part of the group and is looking to give his best and help the Warriors in their endeavours.

“I am just happy to be here, everyone has welcomed me; they have opened their arms for me,” he said. Chirewa said the South African match will be a tough one, adding that the Warriors should focus on their preparations.

“We shouldn't pay too much attention on them we should just do our training and listen to the manager.”

Zimbabwe will be looking for only their first win in this Group having shared points with Rwanda and Nigeria in their first two matches under Portuguese coach Baltemar Brito last year.

Tapera, who is presiding over the Warriors for these two matches, was also hired on interim basis.

Warriors squad

Goalkeepers: Bernard Donovan (Chicken Inn), Martin Mapisa (Dynamos), Geofrey Chitsumba (Manica Diamonds).

Defenders: Gerald Takwara (Ohod, Saudi Arabia), Teenage Hadebe (Konyaspor, Turkey), Brendan Galloway (Plymouth Argyle, ENG), Munashe Garananga (Kv Mechelen, Belgium), Andrew Mbeba (Highlanders), Godknows Murwira (Caps United), Shane Maroodza (Huddersfield, ENG), Devine Lunga (Mamelodi Sundowns, SA).

Midfielders: Marshall Munetsi (Stade de Reims, (FR), Andy Rinemhota (Rotherham United (ENG), Jordan Zemura (Udenese, Italy), Walter Musona (Simba Bhora), Daniel Msendami (Jwaneng Galaxy, Botswana), Tivonge Rushesha (Reading, ENG), Joey Phuthi (Sheffield Wednesday, ENG), Tawanda Maswanhise (Leicester City, ENG).

Forwards: Tinotenda Kadewere (Fc Nantes, FR), Tawanda Chirewa (Wolverhampton, ENG), Douglas Mapfumo (Polokwane, SA), Tymon Machope (Simba Bhora).

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