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Banyana finish 10th in Cyprus after Finland win 2-1
- Updated: March 12, 2015
The national women’s side ended 10th in the Cyprus Women’s Cup after going down 1-2 to Finland in the 9th/10th place play-off in Nicosia on Wednesday.
Played in very wet condition, the South Africans failed to find their feet from the first whistle while Finland looked more comfortable, controlling the match with ease. It was not a surprise when the Fins took the lead in the seventh minute through Juliett Kempi when the South African defence failed to clear the ball.
A short while later Banyana Banyana had a good chance to equalise when Refiloe Jane left her marker and lobbed the ball over the Finland goalkeeper but it also went over the bar.
In the 19th minute South Africa were under attack again from the physically strong and hard-running Finnish players, but Roxanne Barker pulled off a great save to deny the opposition.
Three minutes later Finland were back at it and this time aided by the errors in the Banyana Banyana defence – a back pass from Janine Van Wyk found the opponents but the danger was thwarted.
In the 28th minute, South Africa were nearly punished when Barker misjudged a ball from the corner kick but Amanda Dlamini saved her blushes when she headed out for another corner.
But Banyana Banyana could do nothing in the 30th minute when a cross from the left was not dealt with and Anna Westerlund slotted home amid a cluster of players to give Finland a 2-0 half time lead.
At the start of the second half, South Africa’s head coach brought on Leandra Smeda for Lerato Kgasago. The Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana started this half the better of the two sides, controlling the proceedings.
But it was Finland who nearly found the back of the net in the 56th minute but found Barker solid in goals pulling off a great save. In the 62nd minute, substitute Jermaine Seoposenwe – who came on shortly before the break for Disebo Mametja – pulled one back for South Africa as she rounded Finland goalkeeper Tinja-Rikka Korpela after outsprinting her marker. She has scored both the two goals that South Africa has registered in the tournament – This was after good play from Banyana Banyana – a pass from Portia Modise found Lebogang Ramalepe who released Seoposenwe.
In search of an equaliser, South Africa made a double substitution – Ramalepe and Modise making way for Sanah Mollo and Shiwe Nogwanya.
Seoposenwe came close to finding that equaliser five minutes from the final whistle but her chance went just narrowly wide.
In the 89th minute Finland almost increased their lead when a thunderous long-range shot hit the crossbar leaving the score 2-1 in favour of the Finnish who end the tournament in ninth place while South Africa finish in 10th.
Banyana Banyana starting XI: Roxanne Barker (GK), Lebogang Ramalepe (Sanah Mollo), Nothando Vilakazi, Noko Matlou, Janine Van Wyk (c), Amanda Dlamini, Refiloe Jane, Nompulelelo Nyandeni, Lerato Kgasago (Leandra Smeda), Disebo Mametja (Jermaine Seoposenwe), Portia Modise (Shiwe Nogwanya)
Subs: Mputle Ntshetsana, Lerato Kgasago, Tshepiso Olga Mokabane, Kelso Peskin, Alochia Thobokela, Slindile Ngubane, Jermaine Seoposenwe, Shiwe Nogwanya, Rhoda Mulaudzi, Sanna Mollo, Mamello Makhabane, Leandra Smeda