Thembi Kgatlana Returns to Preliminary Banyana Banyana World Cup Squad

Banyana Banyana coach, Desiree Ellis announced a 36-member preliminary squad ahead of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Monday, 5 June 2023, which includes the return of USA-based striker Thembi Kgatlana.

The tournament is set to take place in Australia and New Zealand from 20 July – 20 August.

Kgatlana is back in the fold after a year of absence due to injury which she sustained during the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations.

The players have a chance to make an impression on the selectors before the final squad announcement, as they will head into camp 12 June to 3 July 2023.

Speaking to www.safa.net , Ellis said this was one of the most difficult tasks she has ever had to do as the women’s national team coach.

“It’s most probably one of the most difficult selections I’ve ever had to make,” Ellis said.

“As a coach you always say players must raise their hand and make it difficult. And it has been very difficult (selecting the preliminary squad). Congratulations to the players that have made the preliminary squad,” she added.

“We are always saying players must raise their hands, and many of them have raised the hands. But this is the group of players that we think we can select from, and they have raised their hands. We are going to do a final selection as well as announce the final 23 plus three. That is even going to be more difficult, but this is the group of players that we think will do the job for us.”

Banyana Banyana’s highest capped player, Janine van Wyk was part of Ellis’ plans for the preliminary squad, however had to withdraw from the list due to injury.

“I have sustained an injury that I personally feel would impact my chances of performing at the highest level that is required to make the World Cup squad. I have to turn down the call-up with a heavy heart, but also knowing that I am doing what is best for the team,” van Wyk said.

Banyana Banyana have been drawn in Group G alongside Argentina, Sweden and Italy.

This will be South Africa’s second appearance at the FIFA Women’s World Cup, after going down in the group stage round at the 2019 edition.

Photo 1 Caption: Banyana Banyana coach, Desiree Ellis announced a 36-member preliminary squad ahead of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Monday, 5 June 2023, which includes the return of USA-based striker Thembi Kgatlana. Photo: Thembi Kgatlana (Instagram)

Please Rate this Post

0 ratings, 0 votes0 ratings, 0 votes (0 rating, 0 votes, rated)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.
Loading...

Recent Posts

Categories

Follow Us