Majimbos in crucial clash against Tunisia

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Majimbos hope to maintain their winning rhythm at the expense of Tunisia in their final African Under-17 Championships qualifier in Lome, Tunisia, today.

This is a do-or-die match for South Africa as a win will see them earning a place in the semifinals of this biennial tournament.

The South African Under-17s enhanced their chances of qualifying by beating Gabon 3-1 on Tuesday through goals by Kermit Erasmus (two) and Jan Sishuba.

"It was a well- deserved victory, especially after the 2-0 defeat by Togo in the opening match," said Majimbos' coach Serame Letsoaka.

"We played well but I still feel we need to be more aggressive up front. It will be a different approach against Tunisia."

Tunisia threw the race wide open after hammering Togo 3-0 in the second match on Tuesday. On Sunday, Tunisia and Gabon played to a goalless draw.

"We all watched the Tunisia-Togo match, everybody in the team has a clear picture of what to expect," Letsoaka said.

"The North Africans are not a bad team. We need to win at all costs in order to qualify for the World Junior Championships."

South African head of delegation David Nhlabathi said: "There is now light at the end of the tunnel after the win over Gabon.

"We need to get the result against Tunisia without having to rely on the other countries for favours to qualify for the semifinals."

Togo take on Gabon in the other Group A match.

The two matches start simultaneously at 5.30pm (South African time) in keeping with Fifa's spirit of fair play.

The semifinalists will qualify for the World Junior Championships in South Korea in August.

Some of the youngsters who carry Majimbos' hopes of qualifying are Ramahlwe Mphahlele, Thulani Serero and Mzo Skhosana.

In Group B, Nigeria and Ghana have already qualified for the semifinals after winning their opening two matches.