The draw for the inaugural Total Energies CAF Women’s Champions League COSAFA Qualifier that will be played from August 26-September 4 has pitted the giants of women’s club football in the region against one another in some massive ties.
South African champions Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies are the seeded side in Group A, and will take on Lesotho Defence Force, Double Action Ladies from Botswana and Eswatini’s Manzini Wanderers.
Zambian side Green Buffaloes are the top seed in the three-team Group B and have been drawn alongside Black Rhino Queens of Zimbabwe and TURA Magic from Namibia. The top two teams in each pool will advance to the semifinals.
It is the first time COSAFA are staging a club competition, with the victor to advance to the continental showpiece event that is set for later in the year.
It makes the stakes high beyond regional bragging rights and provides plenty to play for over the 10 days of competition.
COSAFA General Secretary Sue Destombes described the draw as a very special occasion.
“This is something that we have had on our radar for a while, but it’s a great initiative from CAF to implement a Champions League competition and do the qualifiers at a zonal level.
“We have seven teams taking part in 2021, but by next year we hope to have all 14 of our member associations participating. This is just the start, but we are putting a peg in the ground. This is a momentous day for us in the COSAFA region,” she said.
2021 TOTALENERGIES CAF WOMEN’S CHAMPIONS LEAGUE I COSAFA QUALIFIER DRAW
Mamelodi Sundowns (South Africa)
Lesotho Defence Force (Lesotho)
Double Action Ladies (Botswana)
Manzini Wanderers (Eswatini)
Green Buffaloes (Zambia)
Black Rhino Queens (Zimbabwe)
TURA Magic (Namibia)
The competition will be followed almost immediately by the COSAFA Women’s Championship that will take place from September 9-19 in Nelson Mandela Bay.
By Wonga Sirayi
FARPost’s KZN Reporter