Women’s handball national team head coach Rafiu Salami has assured of a different approach and a much-improved performance when Nigeria play hosts Cameroon in their second group match at the Women’s Africa Handball Championships.
Nigeria lost their opening match of the tournament in a heavily one-sided 35-16 defeat to DR Congo; a defeat which coach Salami attributed to the inexperience of the ladies who are in the championship for the first time in 27 years.
But the Issy Handball Club of France believes his team have learnt a big lesson and today’s against Cameroon will be different.
“I want to say what happened in the match was unfortunate and we are sorry about the outcome of the match,” Salami told HFN media.
“We lost the match because we were not experienced against a team that is one of the best team in Africa as we are playing in the championship for the first time in 26 years.
“That said, the next match against Cameroon will be different.
“The ladies are motivated and we know we cannot disgrace our country even though we are playing against the host.
So expect a different match on Thursday,” he concluded.
Captain of the side Dorathy Nyagh also backed up the coach insisting Nigerians will see a mindset change against Cameroon.
The Benue Queens left-back was at a loss to explain their poor start against Cameroon but insisted they have put that aside and are prepared to repair their reputation against Cameroon.
“I cannot really say what went wrong but I think we needed to have come out with the right attitude towards the game even though it was our first time to feature in this kind of a tournament,” she said
“However, ahead of the second match against Cameroon, our mindset and approach towards the game have changed and it would be different than the first match.”
Nigeria will play host Cameroon on Thursday at 6 pm.
Cameroon lead Group B after defeating Kenya 40-16, with DR Congo in second, Nigeria in third and Kenya bottom.