Banyana Banyana head coach Vera Pauw
has announced the names of 22 players
who will represent South Africa at the
2016 Rio Olympic Games which kick off
early next month.
Pauw has kept the bulk of the team that
has done duty for the Sasol-sponsored
Banyana Banyana since the Olympic
qualifiers.
Only 18 plus four additional players have
been called for Brazil.
From the squad that travelled to the USA
last week, three players have been left out
– defenders Lebobang Mabatle and
Lerato Kgasago as well midfielder Silindile
Ngubane.
This is a further three from the squad that
travelled to Holland where Bongiwe Thusi,
Mapaseka Mpuru and Rhoda Mulaudzi did
not make the cut.
Pauw admits it was not easy to name the
final 22.
“It has been a long journey for the entire
team, some of the players have been with
us since the qualifiers for the Olympics,
but unfortunately I can only take 22.
“We had to look at the balance of the team
and I believe we have made the right
choice. It was not an easy decision to
make though as any of the those who are
not going to Rio had as much of a chance
as those who are in,” said Pauw.
“But I have confidence that the squad we
have selected will represent us well in
Brazil. We did well in the three games we
played recently – two against the
Netherlands and one against the USA –
and this has given me hope that we can
make our mark at the Olympics. At this
stage, the only thing left is for the South
Africans to be behind this team as that
will further boost our confidence.”
There are 18 players who are officially
selected to play in the Games, with a
further additional four who will be on
stand-by. They will travel with the squad
but are not eligible to play unless there is
an injury among the 18.
The additional players are goalkeeper
Kaylin Swart, defender Nomathemba
Ntsibande, midfielder Thembi Kgatlana
and striker Chantell Esau.
Pauw also has a wealth of experience in
her side as ten of the players selected for
2016 Rio were part of the squad that went
to the 2012 London Olympic Games –
Roxanne Barker (28 caps), Nothando
Vilakazi (86), Janine van Wyk (131), Noko
Matlou (124), Leandra Smeda (60),
Amanda Dlamini (100 – she was the
captain in London), Refiloe Jane (62),
Nompumelelo Nyandeni (125), Robyn
Moodaly (14) and Sanah Mollo (69) – all
have 924 caps between them.
The South African Football Association
(Safa) has wished the team well in their
campaign in Brazil.
Banyana Banyana have been drawn in
Group E against Sweden, China and hosts
Brazil.
Banyana Banyana fixtures:
Wednesday, August 3
Sweden vs South Africa
Olympic Stadium
6pm SA time
Saturday, August 6
South Africa vs China
Olympic Stadium
midnight SA time
Tuesday, August 9
South Africa vs Brazil
Amazonia Arena (Manaus)
2am Wednesday, Aug 10 SA time
Squad:
Goalkeepers: 1 Roxanne Kimberly Barker,
16 Andile Dlamini,
Defenders: 3 Nothando Vilakazi, 5 Janine
Van Wyk, 4 Noko Matlou, 13 Bambanani
Mbane, 17 Leandra Smeda.
Midfielders: 6 Mamello Makhabane, 9
Amanda Dlamini, 15 Refiloe Jane, 18
Nompumelelo Nyandeni, 10 Linda
Motlhalo, 7 Stephanie Malherbe, 8 Robyn
Moodaly.
Strikers: 2 Lebohang Ramalepe, 14.
Sanah Mollo, 11 Shiwe Nogwanya, 12
Jermaine Seoposenwe
Additional players: 22 Kaylin Swart
(goalkeeper), 19 Nomathemba Ntsibande
(defender), 20 Thembi Kgatlana,
(midfielder),
21 Chantelle Esau (striker)

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