27 July 2012

South Africa: Banyana Ready to Take On Canada

Pretoria — Banyana Banyana will be out to prove that they are not in London to make up the numbers when they lock horns with Canada in their second Olympic Group F match in Coventry on Saturday.

Kick-off is 3:45pm South African time. While nerves may have got the better of the South Africans in the first 30 minutes of their opening encounter in their 4-1 defeat to Sweden on Wednesday, skipper Amanda Dlamini's charges must now have settled into the Olympic mode, and need a win to keep alive their hopes of a place in the next round.

"We have seen a bit of Canada in action when we participated at the Cyprus Women's Cup in February this year and have an idea of what to expect.

"The nerves of the first match are now behind us and we hope to do our country proud when we face Canada on Saturday.

"It's a great experience for South Africa to play at this level of women's football, being the first time that our senior women's national team has qualified for the Olympics since our team was formed in 1993," said Dlamini.

The Canadians will be just as anxious to secure points, having gone down 2-1 to Japan in their opening Olympic Group F fixture.

The South Africans have had a solid build up phase to the Olympics since outplaying Zambia, Tunisia and Ethiopia in home and away matches to book their place along with Cameroon - as Africa's representatives at the London Olympics.

They also participated in the Cyprus Women's Cup as part of their preparations for their Olympic Games debut.

Banyana outplayed Zambia 6-2 on aggregate to book their place at the CAF African Women Championship 2012 which kicks off in Equatorial Guinea at the end of October.

Banyana's final group fixture will be against FIFA World Cup champions Japan on Tuesday, 31 July in Cardiff.

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