Friday, November 25, 2011

South Africa's Women's U20 Set For December 20 International Friendly

The South African Under 20 Women's National Team (Basetsana) will face neighbours Namibia in an international friendly match on Saturday, 3 December 2011. The match will take place in Windhoek, Namibia and will be used to prepare the squad for the FIFA™ Under 20 Women's World Cup qualifiers. 

The FIFA™ Under 20 Women's World Cup is scheduled to be held in Uzbekistan next year

The match against Namibia is viewed as one of the most crucial preparation matches leading to the qualifiers. The Namibian Under 20 National team spent a month in Germany undergoing training and preparations for the World Cup qualifiers. Chances of meeting Namibia along the way in the qualifiers are great so the South Africans would like to get first-hand experience against a well-rehearsed opponent.

In the qualifiers, Basetsana are set to take on Botswana in the opening round to begin in February next year.

Basetsana head coach, Sheryl Botes, is looking forward to preparing her team for these qualification matches. She is aware that there is a high demand to see the promoted Under 17 National Team (Bantwana) players in the World Cup next year.

The Basetsana squad will consist of crucial players from the Bantwana squad that participated in the FIFA™ Under 17 Women’s World Cup that took place in Trinidad and Tobago last year. The key players in the squad would be Robyn Moodaly, Rachael Sebati and Jermaine Sepoesenwe who have also represented South Africa in the Banyana Banyana squad. Players like Jabulile Mazibuko, Chirstelene Jantjies and Megan Newman were amongst other players that represent South Africa in the World Cup.

The team will train at the Edenvale Sports Grounds, where they will also undergo scientific testing to assess the fitness levels of the players. The duration of the camp will be from Monday 28 November – 1 December 2011. The squad departs for Namibia on Friday (2 November 2011). . 

Botes says they do not want to put too much pressure on the players as this will be their first international friendly match as team. She also wants to see the strengths of the team as a whole.

“As this will be the team's first international friendly match together, I wouldn’t necessarily put too much pressure on them winning the match but rather to use this upcoming camp and friendly match as a means of analyzing the teams strengths. It is also important to assess the individual players' skills and techniques on the field of play. I am aware than the Namibians have been preparing extensively towards the qualifiers, so with this I am relying on the international experience of players such as Jermaine, Rachael and Robyn to boost the team self-confidence in the friendly encounter.” Said Botes.

The Basetsana squad return from Namibia on Sunday 4 November 2011.

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