2 February 2023 – Banyana Banyana’s preparations for the FIFA Women’s World Cup later this year received a boost after coach Desiree Ellis’ charges were confirmed as one of the participants in this month’s Turkish Women’s Cup.

The other participants in the tournament to be held from 13-23 February 2023 are Slovenia, Uzbekistan, Venezuela and Zambia.

Ellis is happy that the Sasol-sponsored South African senior women’s team will face hosts Turkey on Wednesday 15 February 2030, then tackle Uzbekistan on 18 February and finally Venezuela on 21 February. All the matches will be played at the Gold City Sport Complex.

“We are very excited to be going to the Turkish Cup. In our group at the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, we have Sweden and Italy, who are European opposition, and then obviously we have Argentina, who are South American opposition.

“We are very excited and grateful that we will be playing an European nation (Turkey) in the Turkish Women’s Cup. We also play Uzbekistan, who are Asian, and then finally a South American opponent (Venezuela).”

Ellis said she was happy with the quality of the opposition as all the teams tick the boxes Banyana Banyana need as the countdown to the FIFA Women’s World Cup continues (to be held from 20 July – 20 August).  

“So yes, it is a good start to our preparations and we want to also say thank you to the South African Football Association in the efforts to get us the opposition that we want in terms of European and South American sides,” Ellis continued.

“And also thank you to SASOL for their partnership and their support. We are really looking forward to the upcoming camp and to see what we still need to work on, and obviously to get ready for this big year that culminates in the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.”