By MICHAEL MIYOBA
AFRICA’s sole representative in the women’s football category at the 2020 Olympic Games, the Copper Queens have finally left for Tokyo Japan for the games scheduled to officially kick off on July 23.
The Copper Queens are drawn in Group F where they will compete with China, Brazil and Netherlands.
The Copper Queens will play their first game at the Olympic Games on July 21 against The Netherlands before facing China and Brazil on July 24 and July 27.
And Copper Queens coach Bruce Mwape said before departure that the team would represent the country diligently in Japan.
Mwape said the Copper Queens target is to win their first game which will motivate them to get positive results in the other Group F fixtures.
The Copper Queens are among the 30-member team to represent Zambia at the games in Japan where Zambia will compete in five sporting disciplines.
The 30-member team led by NOCZ Vice-President Hazel Kennedy who is the Chef De Mission will travel in groups.
Coach Bruce Mwape earlier announced a final 22-member Shepolopolo squad for the games in Japan.
Striker and captain Barbara Banda is leading the team consisting of recalled stars Hazel Nali and Ireen Lungu.
Also on the flight to Tokyo is striker Hellen Mubanga and Rachel Kundananji who features for CFF Zaragoza in Spain and BIIK Kazygurt in Kazakhstan respectively.
CAF Zone Olympic qualifiers top scorer Grace Chanda who finished the race on eight goals is also part of the team which has Shepolopolo U-17 captain and defender Esther Siamfuko and midfielder Susan Katongo.
GOALKEEPERS: Hazel Nali (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel), N’gambo Musole (Zesco Girls), Catherine Musonda (Indeni Roses)
DEFENDERS: Margaret Belemu (Red Arrows), Esther Siamfuko (Queens Academy), Agness Musesa, Anita Mulenga, Martha Tembo, Lushomo Mweemba (all Green Buffaloes), Vast Phiri (Zesco Girls), Fikile Khosa (Red Arrows)
MIDFIELDERS: Mary Wilombe (Red Arrows), Ireen Lungu (Green Buffaloes), Esther Namukwasa (Indeni Roses), Susan Katongo (ZISD Queens), Avell Chitundu (Zesco Girls), Hellen Chanda (Red Arrows) STRIKERS: Barbara Banda (Shanghai Shengli, China), Grace Chanda (Red Arrows), Hellen Mubanga (CFF Zaragoza, Spain), Rachael Kundananji (BIIK Kazygurt, Kazakhstan) Ochumba Oseke (Red Arrows