Bafana player ratings: Solid performances from Ronwen Williams and Siyanda Xulu
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DURBAN – South Africa and Zimbabwe shared the spoils when they played to a goalless draw in their World Cup qualifying campaign opener in Harare on Friday.
Hugo Broos’ men will now look to get their campaign fully up and running when they take on Ghana in their next fixture on Monday.
IOL Sport’s Eshlin Vedan takes a look at how each player performed during the encounter at Zimbabwe’s National Sport Stadium in Harare.
Ronwen Williams (7): Made a stunning save to deny Knowledge Musona in the first half. Other than that, he was not really tested. He also stopped a testing effort from Kadewere in the 30th minute.
Thapelo Morena (6.5): Not a bad game from Morena. He produced some accurate passes which helped to prevent Zimbabwe’s dangerman Tino Kadewere from making a strong impact.
Rushine De Reuck (6.5): De Reuck was defensively okay as he showed tactical discipline and was composed. He will be hoping to do better in terms of his attacking output going forward.
Siyanda Xulu (7): Calm and composed in defence. He was one of the South Africans best players on the day as he got his positioning right and kept the likes of Knowledge Musona and Khama Billiat at bay.
Nyiko Mobbie (5): Produced nothing special. He was caused problems by Knowledge Musona. He looked indecisive after moving past the halfway line when he needed to pick out passes.
Mothobi Mvala (6): He played in the unfamiliar role of a left-back in this game as a right-footed player. He looked uncomfortable and it was not totally his fault.
Teboho Mokoena (6): He had an okay game, forcing a brilliant save from Zimbabwe goalkeeper Talbert Shumba in the first half but other than that produced nothing special.
Percy Tau (6.5): Tried hard but in the end, he could not get past the Zimbabwean defence. They simply outsmarted him on the day.
Gift Links (4): Struggled to exert himself in the game. It was unsurprising that he was withdrawn at half-time and replaced by Hlongwane.
Luther Singh (5.5): His communication with Percy Tau needs to improve if Bafana are to become a force again in the next few years. Singh did not make an impact in the game.
Evidence Makgopa (4): Did not make an impact an the game. Spurned a good chance to give Bafana the lead after seven minutes as his header was wide.
Bongukuhle Hlongwane (7): Injected some much needed fire into the Bafana attack after being introduced at the start of the second half. He nearly won the game for Broos’ side before his shot was cleared off the line by Takudzwa Chimwemwe. He should start in the next game.