The groupings are as follows‚ with teams in Pot 1 to face a side from Pot 2.
Pot 1: Zimbabwe‚ Sierra Leone‚ Mozambique‚ Namibia‚ Angola‚ Guinea-Bissau‚ Malawi‚ Togo‚ Sudan‚ Rwanda‚ Tanzania‚ Equatorial Guinea‚ Eswatini‚ Lesotho
Pot 2: Comoros‚ Botswana‚ Burundi‚ Ethiopia‚ Liberia‚ Mauritius‚ Gambia‚ South Sudan‚ Chad‚ Sao Tome e Principe‚ Seychelles‚ Djibouti‚ Somalia‚ Eritrea
The 14 victors join the 26 teams who received a bye through this stage‚ including Bafana‚ and will be drawn into 10 groups‚ each containing four sides.
Those qualifiers will be played between March 2020 and October 2021‚ coinciding too with the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations preliminaries‚ making this a busy‚ and crucial‚ two years for the national team.
The 10 winners of the pools advance to a final knockout round there they will play-off over two legs in November 2021‚ with the five victors qualifying for the World Cup in Qatar.
Bafana will likely find out two of their group opponents on Monday‚ though it could be as few as one if they are drawn against two teams in the preliminary round.
They will be second seeds in the draw‚ meaning they will definitely have to get past one of Senegal‚ Tunisia‚ Nigeria‚ Algeria‚ Morocco‚ Egypt‚ Ghana‚ Cameroon‚ DR Congo or Ivory Coast to reach Qatar.
Teams they will not face‚ as they are in the same seeding pool‚ are Mali‚ Burkina Faso‚ Guinea‚ Cape Verde‚ Uganda‚ Zambia‚ Benin‚ Gabon or Congo-Brazzaville.