Clean bill of health for Sables

HARARE - Zimbabwe emerged from Saturday’s big 55-27 victory over hosts Madagascar in Antananarivo with a clean bill of health.

With a much tougher challenge coming up against Namibia tomorrow in this crucial World Cup qualification tournament, chances that coach Brendan Dawson will name an unchanged line-up for the showdown with the Welwitschias increased as the medical team declared their happiness with the wellbeing of the Sables.

Experienced flank Jacques Leitao, who was colossal in Saturday’s win with four tries, emerged from the game with a broken nose, but has been certified fit.

Meanwhile, technical adviser Liam Middleton yesterday said the team had worked on a defensive system, which was a worrying factor in the win over Madagascar.

“Their (Namibia) scrum is very strong, and also their driving lineout,” Middleton said.

“They are much bigger than we are. We have devised a game plan that if we execute, will give us a win.”

The Sables yesterday trained at the match venue, the Mahamasina Municipal Stadium.

“This morning (yesterday) we did a review of the Madagascar game and then we did a preview of Namibia. We formulated a game plan and went to train. All players trained. Boys are in good spirits. Tomorrow (today) we will announce the team and do a final run at the stadium.”

Zimbabwe lead the four-team contest on points with Kenya having opened the tournament with a shock 29-22 win over Namibia.

The tournament is played on a round robin basis. All teams play the other three and the team on top of the log after at the end of the tournament automatically qualifies for next year’s World Cup finals in England.

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