The no-show of the Cameroonian match officials on August 11 led to the rescheduling of the first leg game at Rufaro Stadium in Harare.
CAF sent the match officials back to Harare on Tuesday despite Zimbabwe Football Associations plea that referee’s from the Cosafa zone instead handle the game to reduce on costs.
“CAF has maintained that we use the same match officials for the rescheduled match,” Zimbabwe Football Association media officer Xolisani Gwesela told MTNFootball.com.
Meanwhile, this weekend’s Zambezi derby at Rufaro Stadium will be the third time the two teams’ face-off this year.
Zambia is currently two-out-of-two in terms of results after similar 2-0 win’s in a friendly on April 28 in Lusaka and in the 2013 Cosafa Cup final on July 20 in Ndola.
Zimbabwe striker Masimba Mambare said the first leg CHAN showdown is their best opportunity for payback considering this time the game, for once, will be at home.
“Obviously we are looking forward to redeem our lost pride,” Mambare said.
“We are preparing well for this match and everyone looks motivated to beat Zambia. They have beaten us before, but this is our chance to revenge.
“Most of the players are happy that we are playing Zambia because they feel that we should have beaten them in Zambia.”
Meanwhile, Zambia striker Evans Kangwa said they will not take Zimbabwe lightly despite enjoying a healthy record in 2013 over the archrivals from south of the Zambezi.
“Zimbabwe is a good team. They are strong and we are working hard. We have to be disciplined so that we can do well,” Kangwa said.
And Kangwa is in the frame to start against Zimbabwe after coming on and making an impact to score in Zambia’s 2-0 CHAN win over Botswana on August 3 in Ndola to help seal Zambia’s date against Zimbabwe.
The two sides will meet in the return leg on August 24 in Ndola to decide who qualifies for the tournament to be hosted by South Africa in January.