BY DANIEL NHAKANISO
WARRIORS star Khama Billiat is racing against time to be fit for the resumption of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers in March after he was ruled out of action for two months due to injury.
Kaizer Chiefs yesterday revealed that the 30-year-old attacker will be out of action for two months after suffering a leg bone crack in a 2-0 loss in a DStv Premiership encounter against Maritzburg United at the weekend.
Billiat started the game, but had to be withdrawn in the second half after picking an ankle injury following a tackle by Travis Graham and scans confirmed that he has suffered a cracked bone.
“Injury update: Khama Billiat had a cracked leg bone and will be out for two months. We wish him speedy recovery,” Kaizer Chiefs revealed on Twitter yesterday.
Kaizer Chiefs will play AmaZulu in Durban today to kick off a busy month of Premiership fixtures that will also see them take on Cape Town City, Tshakhuma FC, Stellenbosch FC and Baroka, before finishing the month on January 30 with a Soweto derby against Orlando Pirates.
Amakhosi head coach Gavin Hunt described Billiat’s injury as a blow for his side’s hopes.
“It is a huge blow, I don’t think he (Graham), got a yellow card,” Chiefs head coach Gavin Hunt told The Citizen yesterday.
“It is quite a big fracture.”
Billiat had not been in the best of form for Chiefs this season, but did show glimpses of his old self, superbly creating the goal for Leonardo Castro in Angola last week against Primeiro de Agosto that got Chiefs into the group stages of the Champions League.
The injury came at a time Chiefs having been enduring a difficult campaign in the DStv Premiership, where they are placed an embarrassing 14th on the log and just a point ahead of bottom of the table Black Leopards.
Chiefs are also unable to strengthen their side as they are still serving a Fifa transfer ban until the end of the season.
Warriors coach Zdravko Logarusic will keep his fingers crossed for the skilful midfielder recovery in time for the resumption of the 2021 Afcon qualifiers in March.
Zimbabwe will travel to Botswana for a date with the Zebras on March 22 before hosting Zambia at the National Sports Stadium in the penultimate round of qualifiers seven days later.
Billiat has been working hard to regain his footing following a difficult outing in the last two seasons after joining Kaizer Chiefs.
He is one of the few Zimbabweans that are still in the running for the Caf Champions League after leading Chiefs to the group stage.
Chiefs qualified for their maiden group stage in this season’s Champions League following a 1-0 aggregate win over Angolan side, Primeiro de Agosto, last week.
Billiat and his Chiefs teammate Willard Katsande, along with midfielder Last Jesi of Sudanese side Al Hilal are the only Zimbabwean players that are still involved with Champions League football.
The Warriors talisman will however, be missing when Chiefs kick off their Caf Champions League group stage campaign next month.
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