Zimbabwe’s final preparations for the Total African Nations Championship (CHAN), Cameroon 2020 have been dealt a huge blow, after nine of the 23-man squad tested positive for Coronavirus, just as the last leg of the Warriors camp began.
The Warriors had taken a Christmas break and returned to camp on 28 December, with all the players and technical staff underdoing fresh mandatory COVID-19 PCR Tests.
It has emerged that nine of the players have returned positive results and would now have to be isolated from the rest of the squad.
This left Croatian coach Zdravko Logarusic with a truncated squad until shortly before their departure for Cameroon.
Zimbabwe are in Group A with hosts Cameroon, Burkina Faso and Mali. They are scheduled to face the Indomitable Lions in the tournament opener on 16 January.
Logarusic will however wait a little longer before he can train with the reduced squad, as Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) have suspended all training pending further consultations with the country’s health authorities.
ZIFA confirmed the latest developments in a statement issued Tuesday. ZIFA also revealed that they have since informed the relevant bodies which include the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and the country’s sport regulatory body, the Sport and Recreation Commission.
“All the affected players have been notified and quarantined in line with World Health Organization (WHO) dictates. The players have also been advised to inform their families and contacts.
“Meanwhile, ZIFA has temporarily suspended all training sessions for the CHAN team pending consultation with other stakeholders, but the team remains in camp until further notice,’’ read the ZIFA statement.