Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana head caoch, Desiree Ellis, has named 23 players to represent South Africa at the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France, starting next month (7 June - 7 July).
Ellis has kept the bulk of the team that was instrumental in the Senior Women's National Team qualifying for the tournament in Ghana last year, who have a lot of experience but blooded in some number of youngsters in the mix.
She has named two uncapped players, defender Bongeka Gamede, who plays for the University of the Western Cape in Cape Town, as well as goalkeeper Mapaseka Mpuru, who is on the books of the University of Pretoria.
Including these two, there are only five players who have made less than 10 appearances each for Banyana Banyana - Tiisetso Makhubela (2), Karabo Dhlamini (5), Sibulele Holweni (1) and Amanda Mthandi (9).
Dhlamini and Holweni will be going to their second World Cup tournament in less than a year - they were part of the U17 Women's National Team (Bantwana) that competed at the 2018 FIFA U17 Women's World Cup in Uruguay.
The duo makes up four members of the current squad who have World Cup experience - with Kaylin Swart and Jermaine Seoposenwe having played in the tournamanent in Trinidad and Tobago in 2010 as part of the U17 FIFA Women's World Cup.
There are four players with over 100 caps - captain Janine van Wyk (166), Noko Matlou (152), Nothando Vilakazi (129) and vice captain Refiloe Jane (104).
"It was a difficult period to complete the final squad with many players raising their hands, and that is why we left it until late to announce our team. We went with a lot of experience and included some youngsters because we also have to think about the future. I have always believed in the saying that if a player looks ready don't mind their age, just give them a chance," said Ellis.
"I have full confidence in the squad that we have selected and I believe we will surprise many at the tournament."
Banyana Banyana assemble for camp on Wednesday, 22 May in Johannesburg before flying out to France the next day (Thursday, 24 May).
They will have one last chance to fine-tune the squad with an international friendly match against Norway on 2 June in Amiens.
Banyana Banyana open their World Cup account with a clash against Spain in Le Havre on 8 June, followed by a fixture against China PR on 13 June in Paris.
The final group stages match will be against Germany on 17 June in Montpellier.
GROUP B DRAW:
Spain vs South Africa
Saturday, 08 June 2019
18:00 Local time (19h00 SA Time)
South Africavs China PR
Thursday, 13 Jun 2019
21:00 Local time (22h00 SA Time)
Parc des Princes
South Africavs Germany
Monday, 17 Jun 2019
18:00 Local time (19h00 SA Time)
Stade de la Mosson
BANYANA BANYANA WORLD CUP LOGISTICS
Banyana Banyana will assemble for Camp on Wednesday 22 May 2019 in Johannesburg
We will have a send-off celebration at Sasol Place on Thursday, 23 May starting from 09h00
The team will depart from OR Tambo International at 18:50 on Air France flight AF0995. Arrival time in France is 05:35am
The pre world cup base camp will be held in Roeun, 134 km north west of Paris from the 24 May - 2 June, with the team being accommodated at the Novotel Rouen Sud and training at Stade Lozai
A final International Friendly match against Norway will complete preparations for the Senior Women's National Team on the 2ndMay at 20:00 at the Moulonguet Stadium in Amiens.
Directly after the match we will travel to Le Harve, and check in to the Hotel Barriere Le Royal where we will be based until after the first group stage match against.
The team will train at the Stade Parc des Loisirs, Touques
Our first group stage match will be against Spain at the Stade' Oceane Stadium at 18:00 on Saturday 8th
The next day (9 June) we will travel back by road to the French Capital, Paris and will be based at the Relais de la Malmaison Hotel. The training will be held at the Stade Omnisport du Chemin de Ronde.
Our 2ndgroup stage match will be against China PR on Thursday 13 June at the Parc de Princes Stadium at 21:00.
The team will then depart Paris on the 14 June and travel South by road and Train to Montpellier where we will check in to the Courtyard by Marriot Montpellier, with the Complexe Sportif Laverune, Laverune hosting the teams training leading up to the final group match against Germany on the 17thJune at Stade de la Mosson.
BANYANA BANYANA SQUAD FOR THE 2019 FIFA WOMEN'S WORLD CUP
16. Andile Dlamini (1992) 37 caps Mamelodi Sundowns FC Johannesburg
20. Kaylin Swart (1994) 18 caps Golden Stars FC Port Elizabeth
1. Mapaseka Mpuru (1998) University of Pretoria Pretoria
2. Lebohang Ester Ramalepe (1991) 62 caps Ma-Indies FC Polokwane
3. Nothando Vilakazi (1988) 129 caps FK Gintra Universita Lithuania
4. Noko Alice Matlou (1985) 152 caps Ma -Indies FC Polokwane
5. Janine Van Wyk (1987) 166 caps JVW FC Johannesburg
13. Bambanani Nolufefe Mbane (1990) 43 caps Bloemfontein Celtic Bloemfontein
23. Bongeka Gamede (1999) University of Western Cape Cape Town
14. Tiisetso Makhubela (1997) 2 caps Mamelodi Sundowns FC Johannesburg
15. Refiloe Jane (1992) 104 caps Unattached Johannesburg
6. Mamello Makhabane (1988) 96 caps JVW FC Johannesburg
7. Karabo Dhlamini (2001) 5 caps Mamelodi Sundowns FC Johannesburg
17. Leandra Smeda (1989) 95 caps Vottsjo GIK Sweden
19. Kholosa Biyana (1994) 17 caps University of Kwazulu Natal Durban
18. Busisiwe Ndimeni (1991) 26 caps University of Pretoria Pretoria
21. Sibulele Holweni (2001) 1 cap Sophakama Ladies/HPC Port Elizabeth
10. Linda Motlhalo (1998) 42 caps Beiging BG Phoenix FC China
22. Rhoda Mulaudzi (1989) 22 caps Unattached Johannesburg
11. Thembi Kgatlana (1996) 52 caps Beiging BG Phoenix FC China
12. Jermaine Seoposenwe (1993) 74 caps FK Gintra Universita Lithuania
9. Amanda Mthandi (1996) 9 caps University of Johannesburg Johannesburg
8. Ode Fulutudilu (1990) 11 caps Malaga FC Spain
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