New coach Mandenge aims for Olympics qualification
Takudzwa Chitsiga Sports Reporter
SEASONED rugby coach Cyprian “Super” Mandenge is hopeful he will be able to help the Zimbabwe national women’s sevens team qualify for the Olympics.
The former Young Sables and Sables mentor was appointed yesterday and is set to begin his duties at the helm of the women’s side this month.
Mandenge took over from Derek Chiwara, who has helped them leave a mark on the regional and international rugby scene.
“I am very happy with the confidence ZRU has invested in me and I am looking forward to my new role as the women’s sevens rugby coach.
“No national team task is small and I am looking forward to helping the team qualify for the Olympics, which is our immediate task. “We have a good side that has a rich history and I would like to continue from there,” said Mandenge.
The Women Cheetahs side is expected to benefit from Mandenge’s experience. Mandenge is also a former national men’s team head coach.
In a statement, ZRU said they were happy to have Mandenge as the new coach for the Women Cheetahs.
“ZRU, would like to announce the appointment of Mandenge as the Zimbabwe National Women’s Sevens Head Coach. “Mandenge comes with a wealth of experience as a rugby coach and administrator having coached National Age Groups, The Zimbabwe A team and the Senior Men’s Sables team.
“The Board and the Technical Committee would like to wish Cyprian all the best in his new position,” said the statement.
Zimbabwe Women Cheetahs are currently ranked fourth in Africa.
The side has taken part in regional tournaments such as Middleburg Sevens in South Africa, the Lusaka Sevens in Zambia, Kwese Sevens in Zimbabwe and performed well.
Zimbabwe Women Cheetahs have also participated in the Africa Cup and the Olympic qualifiers, with their best performances coming in 2016 when they played in the repechage qualifiers in Ireland.