PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan has expressed her gratitude to the country's senior women football team, Twiga Stars after clinching the 2021 COSAFA Women's Championship over the weekend in South Africa.
The national flag carriers defeated Malawi 'Scorchers' 1-0 in an epic final at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth to successfully complete the mission with a clean sheet.
This gesture forced the head of state to take it to her official Instagram page where she wrote: "I congratulate our national women's football team Twiga Stars for winning the 2021 COSAFA Women's Championship. "This victory gives us respect, promotes our country and encourages our youths to engage in sports activities. I laud TFF and others who prepared well our team."
On his part, the team's Head Coach Bakari Shime said he was happy to guide his side to another remarkable achievement despite missing some key players due to injuries.
"My team struggled a lot today (Saturday) because some of the players were playing while injured but all in all, we concentrated on the game and in the end, managed to get the win. "To us, this is a big achievement bearing in mind that during the past edition of the contest, we were eliminated in the group stage hence we are satisfied with this level we have reached," Shime said.
He also disclosed that the status of the competition is always growing up year after year a thing he said is good for the development of women football on the continent. Moreover, Shime pointed out that despite winning all their five fixtures, they were exposed to tough matches from their group B opponents like Zambia, Botswana and South Sudan.
He again narrated that when they get back home, there will be no more time to celebrate for the championship as they will begin preparations for the looming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers.
His counterpart for Malawi McNebert Kazua congratulated Tanzania for the victory saying whenever two teams are playing in the finals, one should emerge winners and in that case, Tanzania deserved it.
"We had lots of scoring opportunities but could not turn them into goals while our opponents used well the best chance they got to score what happened to be their title winning goal," he said.
He added that they have learned a lot from the tournament which will make them come back stronger in the upcoming similar competitions while insisting that this year's contest was the best.