Ellis includes young players in Cosafa Cup squad

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While the South African Senior Women’s national team is preparing to take on Ghana tomorrow in the Aisha Buhari Cup, coach Desiree Ellis has finalised her squad for their next assignment.

Banyana Banyana will look to defend the Cosafa Women’s Cup starting later this month in Gqeberha.

Banyana coach Desiree Ellis has named a 20-woman squad for the COSAFA Cup scheduled to take place from 28 September to 9 October 2021.

The cup named after the first lady of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari aims to raise awareness with challenges faced by women in Africa and the rest of the world and will see Africa’s top women’s national teams battle it out for the title and continental bragging rights.

The participating nations are; Nigeria, Mali, Cameroon, Morocco, Ghana and South Africa.

The COSAFA Cup squad consists of twelve players who are part of the Buhari Cup while the notable addition is that of Bloemfontein Celtic Ladies forward Reitumetse Chabana who will officially get her senior women’s international debut.

Young players like Mapaseka Mpuru, Ntombifikile Ndlovu and Noxolo Cesane will look to use the opportunity and are expected to gain the much-needed experience and give Ellis a selection headache for AWCON qualifiers.

With her eyes set on the AWCON qualifiers, Ellis has encouraged more players to get travel documents in order to stay ready for when national team opportunity knocks on the door.

“Each tournament determines what happens in the next one and this is already our preparation for the AWCON qualifiers.”

“We face challenges sometimes with players who we want to be included in the squad but do not have travel documents and that leaves the situation out of our hands,” said Ellis.

Banyana Banyana will lock horns with Ghana on Friday, 17 September 2021 and Nigeria on Tuesday, 21 September 2021 before returning home to begin preparations for the COSAFA Cup.

Banyana Banyana squad for COSAFA Cup

Goalkeepers

Kaylin Swart (JVW FC), Mapaseka Mpuru (University of Pretoria)

Defenders

Karabo Makhurubetshi (Mamelodi Sundowns FC), Tiisetso Makhubela (Tshwane University of Technology), Bambanani Mbane (Mamelodi Sundowns FC), Ongeziwe Ndlangisa    (Sunflower FC), Janine Van Wyk (Glasgow City), Koketso Tlailane (Tshwane University of Technology)

Midfielders

Mamello Makhabane (JVW FC), Oratile Mokwena (Mamelodi Sundowns FC), Gabriela Salgado (JVW FC), Noxolo Cesane (University of Western Cape), Robyn Moodaly (JVW FC), Sibulele Holweni (University of Western Cape)

Forwards

Melinda Kgadiete (Mamelodi Sundowns FC), Ntombifikile Ndlovu (Sunflower FC), Kgaelebane Mohlakoana (Bloemfontein Celtic FC), Amanda Mthandi (University of Johannesburg), Rhoda Mulaudzi (Mamelodi Sundowns FC), Chabana Reitumetse (Bloemfontein Celtic FC).

By Wonga Sirayi

FARPost’s KZN Reporter