1 December 2017 – The South African U17 Women’s National Team (Bantwana) has completed preparations for their crucial first leg first round of the 2018 FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup qualifier against Botswana this afternoon (Friday, 1 December 2017) at the Lobatse Sports Complex in Botswana at 15h00.
Bantwana arrived in the capital Gaborone in the early hours of Thursday, 30 November after facing some challenges.
Of the 22 players that they travelled with from South Africa, only 17 were allowed into the Botswana, while five had to return home due to some missing documentation.
Despite the setback, the squad managed to have the only and only training session scheduled at the match venue. Interim head coach Simphiwe Dludlu is however positive.
“It has been a dramatic period but it is all behind us now. I would have loved to bring all the players here but due to matters beyond our control we had to leave them behind. The five players are safely back in South Africa and with the squad that is here we have a job to do,” said Dludlu.
“After this episode I was worried about how the players would respond at training, but I was happy to see their focus is on the game and I am positive that we will return home victorious. For most of them this will be their first ever international match, I just hope when kick off comes they are ready but they have showed how strong they are mentally and that was impressive”
Of the 17 players in the squad, only three have played international football before – captain Kaylyn Jordaan – U17 (2) and U20 (2); Karabo Dlamini – U17 (2) and U20 (5) as well as Sibulele Holweni – U17 (2) and U20 (2).
South Africa got a bye in the preliminary round.
Botswana qualified for this round after beating Zambia 6-5 on aggregate – Zambia won 5-2 at home but Botswana managed a 4-0 victory in the return leg.
“That result alone shows they are a very formidable side at home so we have to be at our best to ensure we win the match. We are ready for them and I am almost certain we will return home victorious,” added Dludlu.
Bantwana travel back to South Africa on Saturday, 2 December, with the second leg scheduled for a fortnight later (Saturday, 16 December 2017) at the Dobsonville Stadium.
Kick off at 15h00.
BANTWANA SQUAD TO FACE BOTSWANA
- Leigh BROPHY UCT FC
- Kaydee WINDVOGEL HPC
- Kaylyn Jordaan Spurs FC/HPC
- Yenzokuhle NGUBANE Sunflower FC
- Yolanda NDULI Sunflower FC
- Taitana CHRISTEDIS JVW FC
- Sphumelele SHAMASE Sunflower FC
- Thubelihle SHAMASE Sunflower FC
- Jessica WADE JVW FC
- Micaela NUNENS JVW FC
- Karabo DLAMINI Mamelodi Sundowns/HPC
- Precious CHOSHI Kanatla Ladies
- Sibulele HOLWENI Sophakama Ladies/HPC
- Oratile MOKWENA Mamelodi Sundowns
- Miche MINNIES Santos FC
- Thambolinye MZONELI Shooting Stars
- Chloe VALKIN Wanderers Warriors Boys Club