22 June 2016

South Africa/Swaziland: Mashaba Eager to Reach Cosafa Final As They Face Swaziland

Photo: Africa Top Sports
(file photo)

The semi-final clash between Bafana Bafana and Swaziland in the COSAFA Castle Cup will be a battle between master and student. South Africa's head coach Ephraim "Shakes" Mashaba will come up against his protégé Harris Bulunga who leads iSihlangu. The clash takes place this afternoon (Wednesday, 22 June 2016) at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Namibia. Kickoff is at 18h00 South African time (17h00 in Namibia).

This is the second match of the tournament for Bafana Bafana and Mashaba has retained the majority of the squad that beat Lesotho 4-2 on penalties at the weekend (Saturday, 18 June) to book their place in the last four.

The Bafana Bafana mentor says Swaziland cannot be taken lightly as they reached the semi-finals reached the semi-finals after beating Zambia 4-2 on penalties on Sunday (19 June).

"The first match of a tournament is always the hardest. Players are sometimes too eager to play and therefore rush things, and at times the combinations are not perfect. We went past our first and biggest hurdle with the victory over Lesotho, and we believe that the boys will play the football we know against Swaziland. We know that iSihlangu will come at us and we are expecting it, but we have set ourselves a target so we need to ensure that we reach it," said Mashaba.

Meanwhile the Bafana Bafana mentor has made three changes to the squad that played against Lesotho.

Reyaad Pieterse retains his place in goals.

Tercious Malepe will earn his first Bafana Bafana when he partners captain Rivaldo Coetzee in the heart of the defence - Malepe takes the place of Tshepo Rikhotso. The rest of the rearguard will be filled in by Thembele Sikhakhane at right back and Tebogo Moerane at leftback.

In the middle of the park Deolin Mekoa, who replaces Thembinkosi Lorch, gets a start and will play alongside Abbubaker Mobara, Aubrey Modiba and Lebogang Phiri.

Striker Gift Motupa will not feature in the match because he is serving a suspension - his place will be taken by Thabiso Kutumela. Judas Moseamedi will be the other striker.

South Africa starting XI:

Reyaad Pietere (GK), Tebogo Moerane, Thembele Sikhakhane; Rivaldo Coetzee (c), Tercious Malepe, Abbubaker Mobara, Deolin Mekoa; Lebogang Phiri; Aubrey Modiba, Judas Moseomedi, Thabiso Kutumela

Subs:

Jody February (GK), Nkosingiphile Gumede (GK), Tshepo Rikhotso; Siphesihle Stuurman, Menzi Masuku, Thembinkosi Lorch

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