The squad that will be led by Hardlife Zvirekwi is balanced with the likes of creative midfielder Ronald “Rooney” Chitiyo, speedy winger Marshall Mudehwe, Joel Ngodzo and Raphael Manuvire as well as strikers Knox Mutizwa, Roderick Mutuma, Edmore Chirambadare and Franceso Zekumbawira all making the cut.
The three goalkeepers are Tatenda Mukuruva, Bernard Donovan and Chicken Inn’s Elvis Chipezeze, while Ocean Mushure, Stephen Makatuka, Elisha Muroiwa, Blessing Moyo, Lawrence Mhlanga and Bruce Kangwa are some of the defenders that will also make the trip to Rwanda.
Pasuwa expressed confidence in the squad and said his target was to better the team’s record at the previous campaign where they finished at the semi-final stage.
The history-making coach was however, not comfortable giving targets, but said they were aiming to improve on the last performance at the same tournament.
“As a coach and also as a nation, we want to go there and fare well not to make up the numbers. We want to go and produce a good result and reach maybe where people can say we have done better,” Pasuwa said.
Pasuwa said his first match against Zambia will be like a friendly match as his charges had not played a friendly match ahead of the tournament.
“We didn’t play a friendly match and we did play against Harare City yesterday (Tuesday) and you find that some players will be very excellent in a friendly, but in a real game situation they become a different player. Maybe in my case, I would say the first match is against Zambia. It will be my first friendly match and I am going to give more motivation to the boys to come up with a good result against Zambia,” Pasuwa added.
The Warriors gaffer also said he had spoken to the four players that failed to make the cut and assured them it was not the end as they could still be considered for future assignments.
Warriors team manager Shariff Mussa said they would have wanted to go to Rwanda earlier, but the Confederation of African Football (Caf) had stated that they would only cater for teams three days before the start of the first group match.
The Warriors, who face off neighbours Zambia in their opening group D match on Tuesday next week, are expected to leave for Rwanda on Saturday.
Zimbabwe is in Group D alongside Zambia, Mali and Uganda.
The tournament is designed exclusively for home-based players and the Warriors have qualified for every edition of the tournament since its inauguration in 2009.
Tatenda Mukuruva, Donovan Bernard, Elvis Chipezeze, Blessing Moyo, Hardlife Zvirekwi, Bruce Kangwa, Lawrence Mhlanga, Elisha Muroiwa, Stephen Makatuka, Nqobizitha Masuku, Gerald Takwara, Marshall Mudehwe, Edmore Chirambadare, Knox Mutizwa, Roderick Mutuma, Farai Madhanaga, Francesco Zekumbawira, Joel Ngodzo, Raphael Manuvire, William Manondo and Moses Demera.