Banyana Banyana will face Equatorial Guinea in the final round of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games qualifiers.

Banyana Banyana will face Equatorial Guinea in the final round of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games qualifiers.

The South Africans deposed off Kenya 1-0 in Machakos with a Rhoda Mulaudzi goal in the second leg third round clash to go through on a 2-0 aggregate win after registering a 1-0 victory in the first leg in South Africa a fortnight ago.

The Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana head coach had made two changes from the team that started the first leg – bringing in Refiloe Jane and Leandra Smeda for Silindile Ngubane and Shiwe Nogwanya.

Equatorial Guinea needed extra time to brush aside Nigeria 2-1 in Malabo – the first leg in Abuja ended 1-1 two weeks ago.

Banyana Banyana will host the first leg of the final round on the weekend of 2, 3, 4 October 2015 with the return leg scheduled for the weekend of 16, 17, 18 October in Equatorial Guinea.

The winner will qualify for the Olympic Games, which will take, place from 5 – 21 August 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

SAFA Media spoke to Banyana Banyana head coach Vera Pauw in Machakos after their victory.

Matlhomola Morake: Good win against Kenya coach…

Vera Pauw: It was a tough one, but it shows again that you can plan for success. We put our plan in place and stuck to it. We sent our team manager before the team arrived so we can have peace of mind as he would sort everything out beforehand, and that played a crucial role in our victory. We need to learn from this that if off the field things are done well then we can just focus on on-the-field activity.

MM: You said before the match that you were going for a win, nothing else…

VP: We should have scored more in the first half, but the second half was tough because they were pushing players forward, which is the logical thing to do, but after we changed our formation we were in control again – we stopped their midfielders from going forward. I think the biggest compliment should go to the players because they fought like lionesses, it was unbelievable the fight they put in. Although it was not good football we played because of the circumstances of the match, we kept each other in the game – when one made a mistake there was someone to clean up. Together we managed to hold them back. More goals in the first half would have made life easier in the second, but it is a good win nonetheless.

MM: Unfortunately we lost Thembi Kgatlana early on due to injury, did that spoil your plans?

VP: Not really because those on the bench are alert and are always ready to go in. They know more or less what to expect. We went for Rhoda instead of Shiwe (who is more of a target player, and she came on when we needed such a player) because she can play the role very well. She is fast and can outrun the defence and she even scored.

MM: Final round of the qualifiers and we are facing Equatorial Guinea, your thoughts?

VP: We have always been thinking that Nigeria would be our final opponents but at the back of our minds we also knew there was a chance we could play Equatorial Guinea. The latter have a lot of Brazilian players with just one or two from Equatorial Guinea and we expect to get the footage of Guinea vs Nigeria match so we can see their quality. But the truth is Equatorial Guinea will not be weaker than Nigeria. The fact that they won against Nigeria means it will be a tough encounter, but we will go for it. We have the African Games to help us prepare for that qualifier by keeping us sharp.

This is how they lined up:

Kenya: Owino Otieno (GK), Onyango Alouch (c), Asol Achieng, Oguthu Awour, Nixon Sikobe, Bwire Fhakir, Akida Mbeyu, Salano Akilia, Okoth Atieno, Tabaka Chacha

Subs: Vivian Akinyi (GK), Maureen Achieng, Omondi Anyango, Wafula Nekesa, Kiget Cheprotich, Mango Mudezi, Samantha Akinyi (GK)

South Africa: Roxanne Barker (GK), Lebohang Ramalepe, Nothando Vilakazi, Noko Matlou, Janine van Wyk (c), Thembi Kgatlana (Rhoda Mulaudzi) (Busisiwe Ndimeni), Nompumelelo Nyandeni, Amanda Dlamini, Sanah Mollo, Refiloe Jane, Leandra Smeda (Shiwe Nogwanya)

Subs: Nothemba Ntsibande, Silindile Ngubane, Alochia Thobokela, Busisiwe Ndimeni, Kelso Peskin, Andile Dlamini (GK), Yolula Tsawe (GK), Rhoda Mulaudzi, Shiwe Nogwanya

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