Reigning African Female Player of the Year, Thembi Kgatlana spearheads the attack as coach Desiree Ellis of the Banyana Banyana of South Africa released the full list of players in their 23-woman squad for this month’s Cyprus Women’s Cup Invitational Tournament.
Having left out the trio of Jessica Williams, Hildah Magaia and Kelso Peskin who were all involved in the January friendlies with Sweden and the Netherlands in Cape Town “The battle for places in the final squad for the World Cup is becoming tighter and tighter as we get closer to the tournament,” head coach Desiree Ellis told Safa website.
“I have said before that starting with the Cyprus Cup, we will be travelling with only 23 players which is the number that we will take to France as per regulations. But make no mistake, this is by no means the World Cup squad, even though it is very close to what we will select – the tournament kicks off in June and anything can happen,” she added.
“So this is a wake-up call to whoever is not in the squad because the door is never closed to anyone until the announcement of the final squad, but also bear in mind that you don’t want to make too many changes so close to the competition unless there is still some exceptional talent out there that we haven’t selected,” she concluded.
Goalkeepers: Andile Dlamini [Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies], Kaylin Swart, Victoria Muroa [First Touch Academy].
Defenders: Lebogang Ramamalepe [Ma-Indies], Nothando Vilakazi [Palace Super Falcons], Janine Van Wyk, Noko Matlou [Ma-Indies FC], Bambanani Mbane [Bloenfontein Celtic Ladies], Tiisetso Makhubela [Bloemfontein Celtic Ladies], Koketso Tlailane [TUT-PTA], Karabo Dhlamini [Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies].
Midfielders: Mamello Makhabane [JVW FC], Leandra Smeda [Vittsjo GIK], Nompumelelo Nyandeni [JVW FC], Busisiwe Ndimeni [TUT-PTA], Linda Motlhalo [Houston Dash], Refiloe Jane [Canberra United], Molatelo Sebata [First Touch Academy], Kholosa Biyana [University of KwaZulu Natal].
Forwards: Jermaine Seoposenwe [JVW FC], Thembi Kgatlana [Houston Dash], Amanda Mthandi [University of Johannesburg], Rhoda Mulaudzi [Canberra United].
The Banyana Banyana of South Africa will be making their seventh appearance at the tournament billed to hold between February 26th and March 6th, 2019 where they will test their mettle against Finland, Czech Republic and Korea DPR in Group A. In addition to that, the team will resume camping on Wednesday, 20th of February and depart for Cyprus on Saturday, 23rd of February as preparation for the Women’s World Cup in France intensifies.