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Banyana held by Burkina Faso

todayDecember 1, 2023 49

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Hildah Magaia of South Africa during the 2024 Womens Olympic Qualifier match between South Africa and Congo DR at the Orlando Stadium, Soweto on the 29 October 2023 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Banyana Banyana were held to a 1-1 draw by Burkina Faso in the first leg of the 2024 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations Qualifiers at the Charles Konan Banny Stadium on Thursday in the Ivory Coast.

The two sides went to the half-time break deadlocked at 0-0 after a physical first half that saw a Thembi Kgatlana strike being disallowed for an offside in the 38th minute.

Veteran defender, Janine Van Wyk, started the match and captained the side for her 184th cap to level the African record set by Ahmed Hassan of Egypt.

Hildah Magaia broke the deadlock in the 56th minute to give the reigning African champions a crucial away goal.

However, the lead did not last long as Yasso Konate levelled matters for Burkina Faso in the 68th minute.

Despite numerous attempts from coach Desiree Ellis’ side to get another goal and seal victory, it did not materialise and the teams eventually had to settle for a share of the spoils.

Banyana coach, Desiree Ellis, rued the chances that her side did not convert post the match.

“We started a bit slow, but then we got into the game and created a number of chances and I thought we scored. I thought Thembi was not off-side, it was a rebound from Janine’s shot. We had a couple of opportunities, then second half we scored, had a few opportunities, hit the post,” said Ellis after the match.

“Once again, we made a mistake and they scored. We spoke about minimising our mistakes and we kept giving the ball away in areas where they could punish us. We had a few chances again, but we have to do better.”

“But I take my hat off to the players, it’s a brave performance considering the travel, playing back-to-back games and travelling,” she continued.

“We are not looking for excuses, but that (travelling) takes a lot out of the legs. Now it’s all to play for back home. We got the away goal, but they (Burkina Faso) fought bravely, we could have stolen it, but so could they.”

The second leg will be played on Monday at the Lucas Moripe Stadium (Atteridgeville).

 

Written by: Ntsako Mukhari

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