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Banyana Have Something To Prove – Kholosa Biyana

Banyana Banyana and Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies midfielder Kholosa Biyana believes the team has something to prove after missing out on the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

Banyana lost to nemesis Nigeria over two legs in the final round of qualification to miss out on what would have been their third Olympic Games. The African champions face Senegal over two legs in international friendlies away from home with the first match scheduled for Friday, May 31, and the second leg on Tuesday, June 4, at Stade Lat Dior in their first outing since the Paris disappointment.

Biyana missed out on the qualifiers against the Super Falcons due to injury, and admits she is sad the team did not qualify. While the friendlies are being used as preparation for their upcoming defense of the WAFCON title, Biyana says the team also has something to prove after missing out on the Olympics.

“We are preparing for the AFCON tournament which is a difficult one because we won it the last time,” Biyana told SAFA media.

“So we have to try and do it again. I think that’s going to be very tough. I went through the games of Senegal it’s not going to be an easy one. They are a very physical side and they are very quick. But we are looking forward to the game because we haven’t played since the Olympics [qualifiers] and we have a new team and there’s a lot that we need to prove after missing out on the Olympics.

“I think for me the most important thing is to try and improve from the games I played before. For the team we need to try and win the games given that we missed out on the Olympics. We must make sure that we deliver and give South Africa something to smile about

“But like we said we are building on a new phase, we are focusing on the next task which is the AFCON. So it is important that we plan well heading into those African Cup games.”

Banyana coach Desiree Ellis has called up 23 players for the clash but will be without experienced campaigners like Andile Dlamini, Noko Matlou, Jermaine Seoposenwe, captain Refiloe Jane, Regirl Ngobeni, Gabriela Salgado and Nomvula Kgoale.

Lethabo Kganyago
Lethabo Kganyago
Lethabo Kganyago is currently working as a web and newspaper writer for iDiski Times. This award-winning sports journalist covers the Limpopo area and also specialises in coverage of women's football, including Banayana Banyana.