Sweden……….(0)2 ( Fridolina Rolfo 65’, Amanda Ilestedt 89’)

South Africa….(0)1 (Hildah Magaia 48’)

23 July 2022 – The South Africa senior women’s team officially got their 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup campaign underway against Sweden on Sunday at the Wellington Regional Stadium.

It did not take long for both teams to settle into the first half with the tempo increasing with every second. Despite the chances they created, the two teams could not a breakthrough goal in the first half and they were deadlocked at 0-0 at half-time.

The second half saw Banyana Banyana gain advantage with a Hildah Magaia goal in the 48th minute following a ball from Thembi Kgatlana. Kgatlana was troubling the Swedish side the whole night and was unlucky not to be in the scoresheet.

The Sasol-sponsored Banyana appeared to be on the cusp of the celebration of a great anniversary – it has been a year since they were being crowned Women’s Africa Cup of Nations Champions – but the party was spoiled by Fridolina Rolfo’sgoal in what first looked like a Lebohang Ramalepe own goal. 

Sweden kept piling on the pressure and it eventually paid off on the stroke of full-time when Amanda Ilestedt found the back of the net in the final minute of the game to seal the victory.

Banyana Banyana will travel to Dunedin to face Argentina in their second Group G encounter on 28 July 2023 at Dunedin stadium (kickoff-02:00am RSA time).