Warriors lose to South Africa in 2026 WCQs

Zimbabwe suffered their second successive loss in the 2026 World Cup Qualifiers Group C campaign after losing 3-1 to South Africa on Tuesday.

The match was played at Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein.

The Warriors, who lost 2-0 to Lesotho on Friday, were left rueing two mistakes that condemned them to the defeat.

The hosts opened the scoring as early as in the 1st minute after Munashe Garan’anga mistakenly lost the ball and Iqraam Rayners capitalised on the blunder and opened the scoring.

However, a cleaver play by Tawanda Chirewa restored the parity for the Warriors just a minute after conceding.

In the following moments, both sides took turns to attack, with Rayners and Elias Mokwana creating chances for the hosts, while Zimbabwe threatened through Chirewa and Walter Musona.

Chirewa’s two successive efforts after the half hour brought some nervous moments to Bafana Bafana but unfortunately, the first strike was superbly saved by Ronwen Williams, while the second one beat the keeper but was just inches wide.

The game went to the break with both sides tied at 1-1.

In the second half, Zimbabwe tried to set the early pace but it was Bafana Bafana who started dominating the play.

Substitute Thapelo Morena showed early intentions soon after his introduction and finally got his first goal on the 55th minute, mopping home a spill from Warriors goalkeeper Godfrey Chitsumba.

Morena got his brace fifteen minutes later after receiving a brilliant ball Teboho Mokoena.

Zimbabwe tried to recover but Bafana’s dominance and game management proved difficult to overcome.

The game ended 3-1 in favour of South Africa, who moved to seven points.


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