Black Queens, Copper Queens face-off in dicey Olympic qualifier

 Ghana’s Black Queens face a stern test in their quest to qualify for this year’s Paris Olympic Games as they take on the Copper Queens of Zambia at the Accra Sports Stadium, today.

Without doubt, the penultimate round of qualifier will test the character of the Black Queens under the Swiss coach, Nora Häuptle, to charge of the team.

The Ghanaians began the qualifier on a positive note, blowing away Guinea 7-0 on aggregate before recording a 5-0 aggregate victory over Benin in October.

In between these games, the Black Queens have kept a good record to qualify for the Women’s African Cup of Nation (WAFCON) and this has given hope to fans.

Charlton Athletic’s midfielder, Freda Ayisi, is in the reckoning for her debut appearance for the Black Queens and Coach Häuptle is hoping she combines effectively with the likes of Jenni­fer Cudjoe, Doris Boaduwaa, Grace Asantewaa, Evelyn Badu and others to scale the Zambia hurdle.

The Copper Queens, who touched down in Ghana two days ago, did so with some heaviness following the untimely death of a squad member, 24-year-old Norin Betani, who was named in the provisional squad for the Ghana match.

That notwithstanding, midfielder, Ireen Lungu, says the team was high in spirit and ready to play their hearts out to secure a vital away win to make the return leg less difficult.

In Racheal Kundananji, currently the world’s most expensive female footbal­ler, the Copper Queens possess a lethal striker who if not ‘policed’ well can cause havoc to any defence.

The Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola will host the reverse fixture five days later.

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