The Basetsana national U20 women's side's hopes of qualifying for the FIFA U20 World Cup took a dent as they went down 2-0 to Burundi on Saturday.
The match was the first leg of the second-round qualifiers and was played at the Prince Louise Rwagasore Stadium in Bujumbura.
Goals in either half saw Basetsana lose out to the East Africans in the scorching heat in front of thousands of supporters.
Basetsana were on the back foot from the get-go as lack of communication between goalkeeper, Jessica Williams and her defence saw Burundi pounce on a loose ball to make it 1-0 as early as the first minute.
The early goal and thousands of Burundian supporters who came out in their numbers to support the home side caught the South Africans off guard as they opted to absorb pressure from the hosts.
The South Africans certainly felt the absence of team captain, Linda Mothlalo and Lalona Dakweti, who have been the creative sparks of the team.
Basetsana tried getting into the opposition's half on a number of occasions but lacked that final touch when it mattered most.
Going into the second half, the South Africans came out guns blazing in search of the equaliser and an away goal.
However, this opened up the visitors at the back, resulting in a quick counter from Burundi that saw South Africa concede their second in the dying minutes of the game.
It's now back to the drawing board for Basetsana, who will prepare for the return leg at home in two weeks time.