24 January 2024 – Bafana Bafana are through to the Round of 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations after a 0-0 draw with Tunisia ensured passage out of the group stages of the Côte d’Ivoire-held tournament on Wednesday night.

Coach Hugo Broos’ charges put up a masterful defensive display to keep the North Africans at bay and in the process finished second, and a point behind Group E winners Mali. The South African senior men’s team will know the identity of their Round of 16 opponents later on Wednesday when Group F is decided. The group consists of leaders Morocco, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia and Tanzania.

The Bafana Bafana vs Tunisia encounter was a tense battle of wills that was marked by furious tackles, especially during a first half that was balanced on a knife edge.

Some of the tackles looked very dangerous but the referee allowed play to continue. The best chance of the opening period fell to Evidence Makgopa in the 27th minute. But his effort flew agonizingly close to the upright, to the relief of Tunisia goalkeeper Bechir ben Saïd.

The two sides went into the halftime break still tied at 0-0.

The second period played out in similar fashion, with Themba Zwane controlling things and delivering another man of the match performance for the South Africans.

“We wanted to qualify for the next round and we did well as a team. We managed to get a point today and overall as a team we did well,” Zwane said.