Thu Oct 20 21:55:42 CAT 2016

'Mighty Warriors' out to mesmerise Banyana

By unknown | Jun 01, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Linda Moreotsene

Linda Moreotsene

Banyana Banyana's opponents, Zimbabwe, arrived in the country on Wednesday ahead of their Olympics qualifying game on Sunday.

The two sides will meet at the Caledonian Stadium in Tshwane, and "The Mighty Warriors" will no doubt try and capitalise on the absence of head coach Augustine Makalakalane on the Banyana bench.

Instead, the South Africans will have to rely on assistant coach Annah Monate and team manager Fran Hilton-Smith to steer them to victory.

Makalakalane has shrugged off the effect the five-match ban might have on his players and maintains that his players would not let anything distract them from their goal.

"Fortunately, Annah, Fran and I always work as a unit. Our preparations so far have been on track. In fact, we scored six goals on Wednesday in our practice match against the High Performance Centre.

"Although I was not entirely interested in the 6-2 scoreline, testing our scoring prowess is always a good thing to do," Makalakalane said.

Makalakalane was a little disappointed in his failure to spy on the opposition though, as the Zimbabweans' accommodation and training venues were changed at the last minute.

"Yes, I hear they changed hotels, and have been training at the Johannesburg College of Education. I wanted to watch them because you can be sure that they have been keeping an eye on us," he said.

Comforting to Makalakalane though is there has been no injuries in the camp, and aside from Lena Mosebo, who was sent off during the Equatorial Guinea match, all the girls have been declared fit.

The coach again declined to single out his key players. "The time for individual players has since passed. In this team, it is all about a collective effort," he said.

Banyana will be boosted by the presence of goalkeeper Thoko Mndaweni, Mamello Makhabane and Belinda Nkosi. The trio are members of Vodacom champions Super Falcons and will surely bring confidence into the game.

Other influential players are Durban Ladies' Hlengiwe Ngwane and goal poacher Veronica Phewa. The game kicks off at 3.15pm.


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