The South African Senior Women’s National Team (Banyana Banyana) eased into the third round of the 2016 Rio Olympic qualifiers following a 5-0 victory over a Gabon at the Dobsonville Stadium on Sunday. Banyana Banyana won the first leg 3-2 in Libreville last weekend (Saturday, 23 May) to go through on a 8-2 aggregate. Head coach Vera Pauw made no changes to the starting team that won the away match.
A brace by Jermaine Seoposenwe and a goal each by Sanah Mollo, Amanda Dlamini and Refiloe Jane was enough to give the South Africans victory. Banyana Banyana started the strongest with the mission to get an early goal, which came in the eighth minute. Seposenwe put through a beautiful goal after receiving a pass from defender Noko Matlou, beat a Gabonese defence with pace and slotted in the opener.
Jane and Dlamini had chances to score in the 20th minute but their efforts were dealt with by the Gabon goalkeeper and defence respectively. But Dlamini made up for it in two minutes later, extending Banyana Banyana’s lead to 2-0. Her shot on the edge of the box found the back of the net after some great combination play by the midfielders.
Jane also got in on the act when put her name on the score sheet – 3-0 to Banyana Banyana – in her third goal in South African colours. It was a great goal that came after she turned the defender inside out and then coolly slotted home the ball passed the keeper. In the dying minutes of the stanza, Banyana Banyana goalkeeper, Andile Dlamini – who was up to this point a spectator – made a great save to keep the home in a comfortable lead at the break.
Pauw’s charges returned from the break with a mission to score more goals. Dlamini’s shot fell into the keeper’s hands in the 52nd minute, while her header went over the cross-bar three minutes later. A shortwhile later Seoposenwe completed her brace when Mollo’s shot rebounded off the cross bar and fell into her path, and she put the ball away – 4-0 to South Africa.
Mollo put the final nail on the coffin with a great header after receiving a well taken cross from Jane in 77th minute. Pauw made three second half changes to maintain South Africa’s stranglehold of the match – Silindile Ngubane, Shiwe Nogwanya and Lerato Kgasago all came on for Amanda Dlamini, Jermaine Seoposenwe and Nothando Vilakazi respectively. Banyana Banyana will next take on Kenya in the next round after they defeated Botswana 1-0 in the second leg in Kenya.
Botswana won the first leg 2-1 in Gaborone, and Kenya go through on an away goal rule. The third round clash is scheduled for July.
Photo credit: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix