Coleman's brace not enough as Gladiators bow out


Zenatha Coleman scored twice as the Brave Gladiators were held to a draw by Botswana in the second leg match of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Qualifiers played at the Sam Nujoma Stadium on Tuesday night in Windhoek.

The Gladiators were looking to overturn a 1-0 deficit they suffered on Friday night in Gaborone, and they made a perfect time start as Captain Zenatha Coleman won a freekick on the edge of the box and she curled the ball into the low far corner to make it 1-1 on aggregate on just two minutes.

Coleman continued to led the Gladiators that were more solid and determined to do well but they were undone by Botswana who scored through a great country attack. Fingi Mahlasela pounced on 9 minutes from a great cross from the left, drilling the ball into roof of the net, 2-1 to Botswana on aggregate.

That meant the home side needed to score two more goals to advance to the next round of qualification, and just before halftime, Coleman struck again. Thomalina Adams won a freekick on the byline and Coleman Incredibly  went for goal and managed to score from an impossible angle and distance on 40 minutes.

The Gladiators had the edge and the momentum going into the break and started off well in the second half as Adams, the impressive Lovisa Mulunga and the hardworking Memory Ngonda came close for Namibia.

Namibia could have then scored on 52 minutes but when they failed to convert, Bostwana yet again countered and that lady again Mahlasela was at the end of it to make it 2-2 on 54 minutes.

Mamie Kasaona, Juliana Blouse and Beverly Uueziua came on  and tried their best to change the contest but it was not to be as Botswana held and until the end. Final score Namibia 2-2 Bostwana  and Botswana advance 3-2 on agregate to face South Africa in the second round in August in the race to each the 2020 Olympics Games to be held in Tokyo, Japan.

Namibia starting lineup against Botswana: Lydia Eixas, Ester Hamukwaya, Ndapewa Katuta, Emma Naris, Lovisa Mulunga, , Memory Ngonda, Milicent Hikuam, Miltret Ujamba, Julia Rutjindo, Zenatha Coleman, Thomalina Adams.