U20 Women Victory Cheers RB
Fourth Republican President Rupiah Bwezani Banda says he is happy with early signs of a good working relationship between the Football Association of Zambia and the newly appointed minister of sports Elvis Nkandu.
Speaking after watching the Zambia Under-20 Women National Team thrash Malawi 6-0 in the Costa Rica 2022 FIFA World Cup first leg encounter at Nkoloma Stadium, Banda said he hoped his gesture to watch the team would galvanise other prominent people to support the game.
Banda who is fondly known as RB is a lifetime sports enthusiast with previous roles as FAZ vice chairman and supporter group Bola Bola affirming his credentials.
The former chairman of the Chiparamba Youth Academy that proved a notable talent factory in the 2000s said his attendance of a football match revived his spirit as he battles colon cancer.
“The fact that I came must tell you something about what I think of the Zambian girls in football. I watched them when they were at the Olympics, it was so wonderful and so enjoyable. I thought in my current condition (cancer patient) I need to come and a game from the girls,” he said.
“I am hoping that as a result of me doing this that many others like me, businessmen, politicians can come and encourage the girls because these can give us a great name. I am not saying we should not watch the boys because they are also very good. I am glad the minister (Elvis Nkandu) was here, we have spoken about it with the president of the Football Association of Zambia (Andrew Kamanga) and please encourage these kids.”
A hat-trick from Enelesi Phiri and goals from skipper Evarine Katongo, Xiomala Mapepa and Lungowe Namasiku gave Zambia a great advantage heading into the return leg on October 9 in Lilongwe.
Winner over two legs will face either Uganda or Ghana.
RB also said the Chipolopolo could have a great run in the race to the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup when they play Equatorial Guinea next month in back-to-back qualifiers.
“We are capable of doing that, we just need to prepare properly, and we need to encourage the players. We were speaking with Andrew Kamanga our president of FAZ that please put them in camp in good time and prepare them. We can beat any team provided we prepare,” he said.