CAPE TOWN – Banyana Banyana will have a new captain on board for Tuesday night’s Albertina Sisulu Centenary Challenge against Sweden at the Cape Town Stadium (7pm kickoff).
Regular skipper Janine van Wyk has been unable to train since being substituted in the second half of the 2-1 defeat to The Netherlands on Saturday, and won’t feature tonight due to a groin strain.
There are two other injury withdrawals, with defender Karabo Dhlamini (foot) and midfielder Busisiwe Ndimeni (calf) ruled out of the Sweden fixture.
But coach Desiree Ellis is not too concerned with the absence of the above-mentioned players, as it gives her a chance to look at the rest of the squad in the build-up to the World Cup in France later this year.
She has brought in Andile Dlamini in place of first-choice goalkeeper Kaylin Swart, Noko Matlou takes over from Van Wyk in defence – with Jane the new skipper – while Koketso Tlailane will make her first start and striker Rhoda Mulaudzi gets an opportunity in place of Jermaine Seoposenwe.
“It is sad to lose players to injury, but on the other hand, we want to manage those injuries so we don’t aggravate them because these are preparation matches,” Ellis told the Safa website on Tuesday.
“This is also an opportunity for us to gauge what kind of bench we have as we move forward with our preparations leading to the World Cup.
“We have also said we will give players an opportunity to play because after the Cyprus Women’s Cup next month, there will be no time for experimenting – we will focus on the core team that will represent us in France.
“We always say players select themselves, and we want to see that competition as we are working to finalise the final squad to the World Cup.”
All the best to [email protected]_Banyana vs Sweden tonight. Gutted that I wont take the field to lead my team but I'm confident that the players will go out and put up a classy performance & get a good result against a quality team.— Janine Van Wyk (@Janinevanwyk5) January 22, 2019
Catch the game LIVE on @SuperSportTV 10 at 19:00 pic.twitter.com/uSJEPbQNFf
Banyana Banyana Team
Andile Dlamini, Lebohang Ramalepe, Nothando Vilakazi, Bambanani Mbane, Noko Matlou, Linda Motlhalo,Koketso Tlailane, Refiloe Jane (captain), Mamello Makhabane, Thembi Kgatlana, Rhoda Mulaudzi.
Substitutes: Kaylin Swart, Victoria Muroa, Amanda Mthandi, Tiisetso Makhubela, Nompumelelo Nyandeni, Kholosa Biyana, Molatelo Sebata, Leandra Smeda, Jermaine Seoposenwe, Hilda Magaia, Kelso Peskin.@ashfakmohamed