On Wednesday, 12 September South Africa’s Banyana Banyana edged out Madagascar in the opening Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA) 2018 tournament in Port Elizabeth.
Reduced to ten players due to a red-card, Banyana fought fiercely to register a 2 – 1 in front of a near-capacity crowd at the Wolfson Stadium.
“It’s all over in Port Elizabeth as @Banyana_Banyana run out 2-1 winners over Madagascar in their opening match of the 2018 COSAFA Women’s Championship @SAFA_net @COSAFAMEDIA,” tweeted Banyana Banyana on its Twitter account.
“It wasn’t pretty but @Banyana_Banyana will be happy with the three points. SA played with 10 players for about 20 min after debutant Thato Letsoso was red carded,” added Banyana.
Goals from Khanya Xesi and Nothando Vilakazi ensured the national women’s team got a full three points after having to play the last few minutes with a player short, after Thato Letsoso was shown a second yellow card in the 80th minute.
Banyana might have recorded a higher score win if it was not for the sublime performance of Madagascar’s goalkeeper, Ibrahima Dabo, who consequently collected the Woman of the Match gong.
South Africa’s other Group A rivals, Botswana and Malawi, played in the early kick off of the day, where Botswana won 2 – 0 to take the top position in the Group.
Here is how Banyana lined up:
Andile Dlamini, Lebohang Ramalepe, Nothando Vilakazi, Kgaelebane Mohlakoana, Regina Mogolola, Khanya Xesi, Jermaine Seoposenwe, Bambanani Mbane, Refiloe Jane (captain), Thato Letsoso, Nompumelelo Nyandeni.
Banyana will now take on Botswana in their second Group E clash on Friday, 14 September 2018, before finishing the group stages against Malawi three days later.
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