01 September 2022 – African champions Banyana Banyana have been quietly going about their business as they prepare for the friendly internationals against Brazil in the coming days.

The SASOL-sponsored South African Senior National Women’s team face the eight-time Copa América Femenina champions in the first match at Orlando Stadium tomorrow (Friday, 2 September 2022) and then move the contest to the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Monday (5 September 2022). Both matches kick off at 18h00 and the two sides are using them as part of their preparations for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Banyana Banyana coach Desiree Ellis said on Thursday the whole team is excited as they continue to prepare for the first outing against the South Americans.

“We got to camp on Monday, had our first training session on Tuesday and today we will have our final training session, which is match day -1. We are really excited as a team. We asked for good preparation [ahead of the World Cup] and we are really grateful to SAFA and Sasol for starting us off with such a fantastic team,” Ellis said.

“They are a top team, won the Copa América Femenina, a lot of their players play for big clubs abroad and they have a top coach who has coached all over the world. So I think it will be an exciting game.

“It will be a big test for us and that is what we want, especially after WAFCON, to test the players and see where we are at. We are expecting the crowd to come out. We have played for a long time without any fans and we hope that the fans will come out and support us in this game.” 

The coach was joined by Banyana Banyana co-captain and goalkeeper Andile Dlamini, who said the players are looking forward to facing their South American counterparts.

“It’s a very big game tomorrow and it’s also my birthday. The preparations have been going quite well, the spirit is very high and we know this is the beginning of work for Banyana Banyana with regards to our preparations for the 2023 FIFA World Cup. What a way to start against Brazil, tough opponents who are champions. We are looking forward  to performing against them. We will do our best and let God do the rest.”

Banyana will have their final training session on Thursday evening at the Orlando Stadium. Tickets for the encounter against Brazil are available online at Ticketpro at R50 across all ages.

South African Football Association (SAFA) president Dr Danny Jordaan has called on fans to descend on Orlando stadium in large numbers and create a festive atmosphere when the two continental champions meet.