Zimbabwe to host 2012 African Women's Championship

By Steve VickersBBC News, Harare
Equatorial Guinea's women's team
Equatorial Guinea are one of the countries who could play in the 2012 African Women's Championship

The Zimbabwe FA (Zifa) has accepted an offer from Caf to host the 2012 African Women's Championship.

Zifa will have to secure a government guarantee by the end of November.

The offer was made by Caf following Zimbabwe's successful hosting of the Cosafa Women's Championship in July.

"It's an endorsement of Zimbabwe, it will help to grow our game and it will unlock opportunities for sports tourism," Zifa chief executive Jonathan Mashingaidze told BBC Sport.

Sports minister David Coltart has indicated that government is keen to stage the event.

"It's also a stepping stone for us to host competitions like the Africa Cup of Nations and the Caf Under-20 and Under-17 tournaments," Mashingaidze added

Zimbabwe has never hosted a Caf tournament, as the right to stage the 2000 Africa Cup of Nations was taken away by Caf and given jointly to Nigeria and Ghana.

Last year Zimbabwe made a bid to host the 2015 Women's World Cup but withdrew, leaving Canada to hold the competition.

The African Women's Championship will remain in southern Africa in 2014, as Namibia will be the hosts.

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