China-based women’s football stars Tabitha and Temwa Chawinga are set for a rematch when their teams Jiangsu Suning and Wuhan, respectively, clash in the Chinese championship opener next Monday.
According to goal.com, this follows a draw held on Sunday in which four teams will battle for the league title on round robin format.
In the other opening fixture, leading scorer Zambian Babra Banda’s Shanghai will take on Beijing Phoenix.
Temwa provided an assist in Wuhan’s 3-0 triumph over Tabitha’s Jiangsu—who are the reigning champions— in the sisters’ first-ever clash in August.
Reacting to the draw, Tabitha, who is the reigning Chinese Women’s Football Player of the Year, said she is looking forward to another tight contest against her sister.
She said: “Temwa’s team was outstanding in the first phase, but this is a different stage altogether and we are determined to do well in all our matches to retain the title.
“The plan is not just about Wuhan, but the two other games that we will play as well.”
On her part, Temwa said: “It’s interesting that we’ll start the second phase against Tabitha’s team, but all the matches in the second phase will be crucial. We have to fight for a top-two finish to qualify for the final.”
In the first round, Temwa scored six goals in nine matches to lead Wuhan to a top-four finish while Tabitha netted seven times in eight outings to inspire Jiangsu Suning to the last four.
Wuhan must subdue the reigning champions in a bid to boost their hopes for the title after they finished the first round on top of the Chinese log table without defeat.
Elsewhere, Banda will aim to lead Shanghai to continue her fine form when they face giant-killers Beijing Phoenix.
She has enjoyed a huge breakthrough in her debut season in China, scoring 12 goals in nine matches for Shanghai as they finished the stanza as runners-up.
The three African lethal strikers will set their sights on propelling their Chinese sides to domestic glory in the second phase.
The top two teams with most points at the end of the three rounds of matches are expected to meet in the final on October 11.