Cosafa Cup Group A Preview: Eswatini to tackle Mauritius in opener

Eswatini are set to open their 2019 Cosafa Cup Group A campaign against Mauritius in Durban, South Africa on Saturday.

The group has been reduced to three teams after the withdrawal of Angola from the competition due to their preparations for the upcoming 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals. 

Comoros are also part of the three-team group and they are scheduled to take on Eswatini's Sihlangu Semnikati on Monday in their first game. 

Kosta Papic, Black Leopards

Sihlangu Semnikati, who are under the guidance of Kostadin Papic, are hoping to get off to a winning start in the regional tournament. 

Papic's charges are winless in their last nine matches in all competitions having drawn 1-1 with Malawi away in the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifier earlier this month. 

The Serbian tactician will look to his key forwards Felix Badenhorst and Justice Figuaredo, who both ply their trade in South Africa. 

Sihlangu Semnikati's best performance in an international tournament has been a semi-final finish in the Cosafa Cup.

Mauritius National Football team

Meanwhile, Mauritius are also keen to kick-off their Group A campaign with a victory under their local tactician Akbar Patel. 

Les Dodos as Mauritius are affectionately known to their fans, are also winless in their last five matches having lost 1-0 to Fiji away two months ago. 

Patel has included experienced duo Kevin Jean-Louis and Giano Fabrice Li Tien Kee, and 20-year-old midfielder Adrien Francois in the Cosafa Cup squad. 

Les Dodos, who participated in the 1974 Afcon finals, will be hoping to go all the way and reach the final of the Cosafa Cup for the first time this year. 

Eswatini and Mauritius have clashed four times previously, according to the Fifa website. 

Les Dodos have defeated Sihlangu Semnikati once, while three games have ended in a draw.

Match Number Fixture Date Venue Kick-off Time TV channel
1 Eswatini v Mauritius 25/05 King Zwelithini Stadium 16h30 SS11