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Last Updated: Friday, 28 May, 2004, 18:06 GMT 19:06 UK
Marimo quits Zimbabwe
By Steve Vickers
BBC Sport, Harare

Former Zimbabwe coach Sunday Marimo
Sunday Marimo has resigned as the coach of Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe's 2006 World Cup and African Cup of Nations qualifying hopes have been thrown into disarray with the resignation of coach Sunday Marimo.

His move comes just nine days before the Warriors' opening qualifier way to Gabon.

Marimo refused to disclose his reasons, but is believed to be unhappy with plans by the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) to bring in a technical advisor.

"I've put in a letter of resignation, and I won't change my mind," Marimo told BBC Sport.

There had been initial speculation that the South Africans Clive Barker and Jomo Sono were in the running for the job.

It has since emerged that the leading contender is Valeer von Billen, a former coach of Ivorian side Satellite, and who is currently in charge of a Belgian third division club.

Marimo was willing to accept a highly-qualified technical director from Germany or Brazil, but had made it clear that he was not prepared to work with anyone less qualified than him.

Marimo, a former Zimbabwe captain, led the Warriors to their first-ever Nations Cup in Tunisia this year.

He considered quitting in Tunisia after criticism from fans when the Warriors were beaten in their first two matches.

He was persuaded to continue, following pressure from the public and the sports ministry.

Marimo's assistants Rahman Gumbo and Brenna Msiska are likely to take charge for the qualifier against Gabon.

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