By Oyediji Oluwaseun Babatunde
Sports Writer, kick442.com Nigeria
Banyana Banyana of South Africa defeated nine-time African Champions, Super Falcons of Nigeria 2-1 in the opening Group C game of the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (WAFCON) at the Stade Moulay Hassan, Rabat, Morocco.
Super Falcons of Nigeria coach, Randy Waldrum started the encounter with Tochukwu Oluehi in goal after first choice Chiamaka Nnadozie was missing due to yellow card accumulation.
Osinachi Ohale, Ashleigh Plumptre, Onome Ebi, Toni Payne, Asisat Oshoala, Ifeoma Onumonu, Rita Chikwelu, Rasheedat Ajibade, Halimatu Ayinde, and Michelle Alozie also started the game for holders, Nigeria.
For South Africa’s Desire Ellis, Andile Dlamini started in goal alongside Lebohang Ramalepe, Noko Alice Matlou, Hildah Magaia, Noxolo Cesane, Linda Mothlalo, Tembi Kgatlana, Jermaine Seoposenwe, Bambanani Nolufefe, Refiloe Jane, and Sibulele Holweni.
The South Africans had the lion’s share of ball possession and created early chances.
The Nigerian side had to rely on wing play with the team trying to locate Asisat Oshoala in search of goals.
In the 20th minute, Payne and Oshoala linked up well but the latter meets a brick wall inside the area.
South Africa finally got the breakthrough in the 60th minute as Jermaine Seoposenwe opened the scoring for Banyana Banyana.
Two minutes later, Hilda Magaia doubled the lead for South Africa capitalising on an open loophole in Nigerian defence.
Rasheedat Ajibade reduced the deficit for Nigeria in the additional minutes of the second half when she converted a left footed attempt into the bottom left corner from Onome Ebi’s cross.
South Africa recorded its third victory over Nigeria in both sides’ last four games and moved to the top of Group C ahead of Botswana’s game with Burundi.
Nigeria will next play debutant, Botswana on July 7, the same day the South African will face Botswana.
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