Banyana Banyana striker Portia Modise celebrates her 72nd international goal for SA, and the first-ever goal for any SA team at an Olympic Games, an audacious shot from the centre circle against Sweden at the Coventry City Stadium on Wednesday 25 July, 2012, as Amanda Sister runs in to congratulate the goal. The South African team lost 4-1 to Sweden, after trailing 3-0 at half-time in their debut Olympic fixture. Photo: Wessel Oosthuizen / SA Sports Picture Agency

A second-half wonder-goal from Portia Modise wasn’t enough to stop our Banyana Banyana women’s soccer side going down 4-1 to Sweden at the 2012 Olympic Games on Wednesday.

After going into halftime 3-0 down at the City of Coventry Stadium many thought it was all over bar the shouting for Banyana’s opening Group F game.

Banyana Banyana captain Amanda Dlamini looks for a gap in the very composed Swedish defence to play her attackers into space, as Lisa Dahlkvist (left) and Sweden captain, Nilla Fiscsher, look to close her down. Photo: Wessel Oosthuizen / SA Sports Picture AgencyBut Modise, not nicknamed “Bashin” for nothing, clearly had second thoughts as she latched onto a ball just inside the Swedish half in the 60th minute and bashed a blaster past a non-plussed goalkeeper.

It was from 45 metres out and the Swedes looked non-plussed as the ball scorched home.

Banyana will now be down but not out after a plucky performance against the world’s fourth ranked side.

They’re only ranked 61st and could have gone down by a lot more but credit to coach Joseph Mkhonza and captain Amanda Dlamini they refused to lie down.

The first goal came in the seventh minute after a wicked deflection. Then two goals in the space of two minutes hammered in the Swedish domination.

61st-ranked SA's striker Noko Matlou plays the ball forward against a clearly superior Sweden, ranked fourth in the world. Photo: Wessel Oosthuizen / SA Sports Picture AgencySouth Africa weren’t without fight though and Modise and Janine van Wyk both went close. After Modise’s super strike gave South Africa hope it wasn’t long however before Lotta Schelin scored her second goal to take the margin back to three goals.

Some said that it would be a thrashing for Banyana but this result will give them some hope, especially that second half where they shared the spoils when it came to goals.

Match statistics said that Banyana had 43% of possession compared to 57% of the Swedes but when it came to heart they gave their all. And that’s what will be key to Team SA’s hopes as the Games get going on Friday.

Next up for Banyana are seventh-ranked Canada in Coventry on Saturday, and then their biggest test of all, against Japan in Cardiff on Tuesday.

 

Olympic Games Women’s Football Group F (SA Fixtures and Results):
Banyana Banyana 1-4 Sweden (Coventry, England)
28 July – 15h45: Banyana Banyana vs Canada (Coventry, England)
31 July – 15h30: Banyana Banyana vs Japan (Cardiff, Wales)
 
Banyana Banyana Squad:
No – Position – Name
14 – FW – Sanah Molo
10 – MF – Mary Ntsweng
5 – DF – Janine van Wyk
3 – DF – Nothando Vilakazi
6 – DF – Zamandosi Cele
18 – GK – Thokozile Mndaweni
4 – DF – Amanda Sister
9 – MF – Amanda Dlamini
11 – FW – Noko Matlou
13 – MF – Gabisile Hlumbani
17 – FW – Andisiwe Mgcoyi
8 – MF – Kylie-Ann Louw
7 – FW – Leandra Smeda
2 – MF – Robyn Moodaly
1 – GK – Roxanne Barker
16 – MF – Nompumelelo Nyandeni
15 – DF – Refiloe Jane
12 – FW – Portia Modise
 
Sweden Squad:
No – Position – Name
17 – DF – LEVENSTAD M
13 – DF – NILSSON L
12 – MF – HAMMARSTROM M
11 – MF – GORANSSON A
18 – GK – LUNDGREN S
8 – FW – SCHELIN L
4 – DF – SVENSSON A
3 – DF – BERGLUND E
5 – MF – FISCHER N
14 – MF – ALMGREN J
6 – DF – THUNEBRO S
7 – MF – DAHLKVIST L
10 – FW – JAKOBSSON S
15 – MF – SEGER C
2 – DF – SEMBRANT L
16 – FW – EDLUND M
1 – GK – LINDAHL H
9 – MF – ASLLANI K