13 September 2017

South Africa: Skipper Van Wyk's Wishes From Afar for Banyana Banyana

Banyana Banyana captain Janine van Wyk has sent good-luck wishes to her teammates in the national team ahead of the upcoming 2017 COSAFA Women's Championship starting Wednesday in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, and continuing until 24 September.

Van Wyk, who was not selected because the tournament does not fall under the FIFA Calendar date, said she was confident the players will do well.

'I would like to wish the team all the best for the upcoming COSAFA Cup tournament. I trust that the team is ready to compete to the best of their ability. The majority of the players have experienced playing at this level in a tournament and I am positive that they would share it with the new faces on the team,' said Van Wyk from Houston, USA.

The Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana side have been drawn in Group C alongside Lesotho, Namibia and Botswana.

'It's hard for me not to be part of this journey with my teammates, especially as the leader of the side, but I believe that there are other players that will lead the team in the right direction and hopefully all the way to the finals,' added Van Wyk.

'I just want to say good luck to the entire team, including the technical team and the support staff. And to the players, I would like to remind them that they are out there representing our country and carrying the dreams of many girls out there that wish to be in their shoes. Go fly our flag high ladies, I will be cheering you on, every step of the way.'

Banyana Banyana vice captain, Refiloe Jane, will lead the team in the absence of Van Wyk.

In the opening match, South Africa will be up against Lesotho on Thursday at the Luveve Stadium. Kick-off is at 4.30pm.

Some of the Banyana players will be familiar with the venue, as it was used for the AUSC Region 5 Games in 2014, where the South African women's side won the gold medal.

Banyana Banyana face Namibia on Friday, 15 September and will be up against Botswana two days later.

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