Malawi national football team, the Flames, has been drawn in Group B with Angola, Lesotho and Mauritius for the 2016 Cosafa Castle Cup to be staged in Namibia from June 11-25.
And if they will become the group winners, they will meet South Africa, who have been seeded for the quarterfinals.
The Cosafa Castle Cup draw was made Thursday night.
Group A features Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Seychelles and one of the surprise packages from 2015, Madagascar.
The tournament has a guest nation in DR Congo, who ate also seeded for the quarterfinals.
The seeded teams are last year’s runners-up Mozambique, Botswana, defending champions Namibia, Zambia, DR Congo, Mozambique and South Africa.
The hosts Namibia begin the defence of their title with a quarterfinal clash against Botswana, while Zambia the winners of Group A.
According to the Cosafa website, the quarterfinal losers will then participate in the Plate competition that was first introduced in 2013 and was won by the Flames last year.
Chairman of this year’s organising committee, Timothy Shongwe, expects he tournament to be as exciting as before.
“I know it is going to be a wonderful tournament in Namibia,” he is quoted as saying after the draw. “Our goal, as always, is to help develop the future stars of tomorrow and showcase the talent that exists within the Southern African region.
“The 2016 Cosafa Castle Cup has the potential to be the best yet and the draw has only added to the sense of anticipation ahead of the tournament,” he said.
Namibia will be hosting the event for the first time and do so as holders, with Windhoek set to stage the matches across two venues.
The Cosafa Castle Cup was launched in 1997 and very quickly became one of the most exciting competitions on the African soccer calendar.
The emergence of the southern African regional tournament has also helped the rise to prominence and the growth in strength of the region’s soccer.
It has given the Cosafa member countries opportunities to increase their international profile and seek further success on other stages, like that of the African Nations Cup finals and the World Cup finals.
Zambia and Zimbabwe have each claimed four titles each, with South Africa and Angola three-time winners. Namibia claimed their first championship when they won the 2015 edition.
The quarterfinals draw is as follows:
South Africa vs Winner Group B
Botswana vs Namibia
Zambia vs Winner Group A
DR Congo vs Mozambique