Under-17s out of World Cup

Linda Moreotsene

Linda Moreotsene

The South African Under-17 women's team have failed to qualify for the inaugural Women's Under-17 World Cup, and the coach has blamed the players' lack of big match temperament for this failure.

Cameroon defeated Augustine Makalakalane's girls 1-0 (aggregate 3-0) on Saturday at Caledonian Stadium in Tshwane.

Speaking after the match, the coach said his team's chances were also hurt by them not playing any competitive matches prior to this clash with Cameroon.

On Saturday, the South African women were jittery in the first half, but they also shot themselves in the foot in the second half, as they lacked composure in the box.

Had the locals made use of half the chances they created, they, not Cameroon, would now be waiting to hear from CAF if they will be one of the two African countries headed for New Zealand in November.

"At halftime I told them to go out and play their normal football as they had nothing to lose," Makalakalane said.

When Nokukhanye Zide was introduced and Yola Jafta was switched to defence, the Cameroon team were forced to defend and work hard. They had quickly scored their insurance goal early in the second half through Jacqueline Ada, and were content to sit back.

Enoh Ngachu, the visiting coach, said he had effectively finished off the match in the first leg in Yaounde. "It's important to note that we have been in camp since December," he said.