Zimbabwe senior netball team, the Gems have suffered a blow after veteran captain and wing attack Perpetua Siyachitema sustained a shoulder injury ahead of the team’s World Cup opening match against Sri Lanka this Friday.

Siyachitema was injured on Sunday during a friendly match at Old Bedians Sports Club in Manchester, and she missed training yesterday.

She is wearing a sling and in a race against time to be fit for the Sri Lanka game set for the M and S Bank Arena.

Team Doctor, Dr Maramba said they were still assessing the 35-year-old Siyachitema and the technical team is sweating on her fitness in order to enable her to lead from the front with her experience.

The Gems will tonight play another local side from the local elite league at the Kingway Leisure Centre at 19:15 as part of the final preparations after cancelling a proposed friendly against the Cranes of Uganda due to logistical challenges.

The gems need a confidence boosting win against Sri Lanka in their opening match before they meet defending champions and 11-time winners, Australia on Saturday.

Sri Lanka have been to the Netball World Cup 11 timers, while Zimbabwe who are making their debut appearance, will be seeking to leave a mark at the showpiece.