Zambia: The Zambia Women’s National Team held a training on a chilly day at Korikori Park in Rototuna, where they invited pupils from Rototuna High School and Silverdale Normal School to watch the open session.
The one hour session was followed by a 30-minute interaction session with the pupils that included activities such as the signing of autographs, a quiz, song and dance, warmup and ball sessions with the World Cup squad.
The Copper Queens, who opened their 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Group C campaign against Japan on 22 July, won the hearts of the pupils who chanted Copper Queens and Zambia slogans as they watched the team train.
Silverdale Normal School teacher Nesra Wale thanked the Copper Queens for opening the doors to the pupils.
“It’s a bit awkward timing because today is the first day back to school. So, a lot of them were messaging me during the holiday and asking, ‘Hey, is it still on?’ It is a really good opportunity for them to see the Women’s World Cup training and to know that they can participate in this level where they travel the world,” said Wale.
A pupil, Rebekah Lawrence, told the team that she will be in the stands at Waikato stadium because the Copper Queens had welcomed her with warm hearts.
“They are letting us watch their training session, which is very cool, so we will definitely be cheering them on,” Lawrence said.
Copper Queens captain Barbra Banda said it was great to share traditional songs and dances with the ever-smiling pupils who motivated and encouraged the team to compete at their debut World Cup.