10 July 2023 – The South African senior women’s team has settled down in New Zealand and the hard work has intensified for coach Desiree Ellis and her charges. 

The reigning African Champions, who are currently ranked at 54 in the latest FIFA rankings, will face 36th-ranked Costa Rica on Saturday, 15 July 2023 in Christchurch, New Zealand in what will be their final friendly match before the start of the tournament on 20 July 2023.

Speaking after the team’s training session ,coach Ellis remained positive ahead of the encounter against Costa Rica and said the friendly match will be crucial in preparing for Banyana Banyana’s opening game against Sweden.

“It was good to get on the field and get some work done. Everyone looked enthusiastic and that was really fantastic. We really tried to get as many touches on the ball as we could with the training that we did, and we were happy with that,” said the coach.

“With the jet lag I think slowly but surely it’s getting better. It is another top team, a World-Cup bound team. Their preparations are similar, they are playing African countries and I think that’s why they chose us to play. A lot of our game will be based on what we will do against Sweden.”

The team had two training sessions (morning and afternoon) on Monday, 10 July 2023. 

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