Modise en route to Stellenbosch for training camp with Banyana
SOUTH African women's soccer legend Portia Modise has been thrown a lifeline and could finally represent the country at a major global tournament.
Modise will receive a call-up letter from Safa today to join Banyana Banyana, who are off to an intensive training camp in Stellenbosch. Banyana leave for Stellenbosch tomorrow to start the camp, which is part of the final preparations for the 2012 London Olympics.
Modise, who plays for Sasol National League defending champions Super Falcons, has been quietly monitored by national coach Joseph Mkhonza and his assistant Jerry Laka.
Mkhonza was in Alexandra last week to watch the match between Falcons and Alex Ladies where Banyana's all-time leading goalscorer, with 67 goals, played.
Modise, who turns 29 on June 20, is also Banyana's most capped player with 83 caps.
"It's news to me that I will be going back to Banyana Banyana this week, but that's great," said Modise, who has also played for Fortuna Hjorring in Denmark.
"I have been playing regularly at my club and I will definitely add value in the national team if I'm called up. But I have no reason to doubt you.
"The last time I played for Banyana Banyana was against Holland at the Caledonian Stadium in 2009. It's been a long time but I never lost hope.
"I will work hard to ensure that I'm part of the team going to the London Olympics," she added.
Mkhonza refused to confirm or deny whether Modise was rejoining Banyana, except to say the team to Stellenbosch will be announced today.
"I'm in the process of finalising the team with my technical staff and let's wait for the announcement. We will be in Stellenbosch for scientific tests and also play a series of games against boys' teams to prepare for the 2012 London Olympics."
Modise was one of two African stars, along with Nigeria's Perpetua Nkwocha, nominated for the 2005 Fifa Women's World Player of the Year award, which was won by Birgit Prinz.
In the 2006, Modise won the African Women's Championships player of the tournament award.
In addition, Soweto-born Modise was selected to play for the Fifa All-Stars squad in the match preceding the official draw for the 2007 Women's World Cup.