Harare Friendly Augers Well for Banyana Banyana’s AFCON Dreams

Banyana Banyana defeated the Mighty Warriors of Zimbabwe 3-0 in an entertaining international friendly match played in Harare, Zimbabwe on Thursday, 10 November.

The clash was in preparation for the 2016 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations tournament to be held in Cameroon from 19 November to 3 December.

A brace by Thembi Kgatlana in either half of the match, as well as a goal from Leandra Smeda was enough to give the visitors victory and showcased that interim coach Desiree Ellis means business with impressive results.

“While the game was a friendly, it got more and more intense as both teams showed off their competitiveness. We are excited about the growth and development of women’s football and we are proud of our contribution to government’s transformation agenda,” said Ellis.

“I made changes in this game because I needed to see what other players can offer in a match situation and I am impressed with what I saw. Every coach that goes into a match looks for a win, but for me the bigger picture was to test as many players as possible and I am glad the exercise worked well. If you can leave out some regulars in the starting line up and still manage a win, that is something to be proud of. And getting a victory ahead of a big tournament is a morale booster for the entire team.”

This was her second win in as many matches – Banyana Banyana beat Egypt 3-1 in Ellis’ first match in charge last month (Saturday, 22 October 2016).

This is yet another testimony that the team will do South Africa proud in Cameroon.

Banyana Banyana are in Group A, together with hosts Cameroon, Egypt and Zimbabwe while Group B consists of Nigeria, Mali, Ghana and Kenya.

“We need to continue to celebrate our talent, especially considering the overwhelming success of Banyana Banyana in recent years. It is a good and well balanced squad and I am confident we are picking up from where we left off during the Olympics,” added Ellis.

The South Africans return home on Friday, 11 November.

They will then fly out to Cameroon on Tuesday, 14 November 2016.


Final Score:
Zimbabwe …….…..(0)
South Africa ……… (3)

Magwede; Makoto; Chibanda; Msipa; Moyo; Basopo; Makore

South Africa:
Andile Dlamini
Leandra Smeda
Janine van Wyk (c)
Bambanani Mbane
Nothando Vilakazi
Nompumelelo Nyandeni
Refiloe Jane
Thembi Kgatlana
Linda Motlhalo
Silindile Ngubane
Shiwe Nogwanya
Yolula Tsawe
Astria Boks
Noko Matlou
Lebogang Mabatle
Nomathemba Ntsibande
Amogelang Motau
Mamello Makhabane
Andisiwe Mgcoyi

Match Officials:
Referee: Thanks Nyahuye (Zim)
1st Assistant: Stella Ruvinga (Zim)
2nd Assistant: Varaidzo Samushonga (Zim)
Match Commissioner: Rhoda Rushizha (Zim)

Photo 1 caption: Banyana Banyana pictured shortly before their international friendly against Zimbabwe in Harare. The South Africans beat Zimbabwe 3-0 on Thursday, 10 November 2016, for a second thumping win under the guidance of caretaker coach Desiree Ellis, as the team ramps up its preparations for the 2016 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Cameroon from 19 November. Photo: SASOL

With editing by gsport

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