The Zebras will campaign in Group E against Tunisia – a side they played and beat in 2012 qualifying, Senegal and Egypt.
The leading scorer of the 2012 Africa cup qualifying series however believes that the Zebras could still find their way into the top two of a tough group and wants the fans to rally with the squad especially when they play at home.
"Our first game in the group is against Tunisia. I scored twice against them when qualifying for the 2012 finals but I don’t know if I can repeat that. We will work hard to do it though. They are a team that will want to beat us because we disrupted their plans last time around. They want revenge against us so it’s going to be extra difficult. They know us and what we can do and it’s going to be a tight game; going to Tunis is a tough job" he said adding: "Back then we were a surprise package and no one expected anything from us, so we did not have any pressure. Now they know us and what we are capable of. Back then they only knew that they were going to collect three points playing against us and they did not do their homework but they got the shocks of their lives."
Ramatlhakwane warned that the highly rated sides in their group would underrate Botswana at their own peril.
"Many will see us as the weak link in the group, but our opponents know what we are capable of. It's best to win your home games to stand a better chance of qualifying. The Arab teams don’t like playing us because we always give them a hard time. I think we have a good chance of qualifying because if you look at Tunisia it’s been a while since they beat us."
Ramatlhakwane said he was under no pressure to prove anything or repeat the feats of 2012 stressing that his squad members and opposition knew what him and the Zebras were capable of doing.
He said with the tight schedule of games, qualification would be down to the "depth in the squads."
"If we stay injury free I think we have a chance."
"Now we need that stadium to be full, we really need the support of our home fans because when we play away games, fans make the environment intimidating when they cheer their team. We also need to do the same, even when things are not going well because we don’t go out there to play badly. We really need the support because we will be hosting the big boys and we need the 12th man."