Bantwana squad to face Ethiopia in U17 World Cup qualifier named

By Nakampe Lekwadu

The national under-17 women’s team coach Nthabeleng Modiko has selected his final team for the next round of the 2024 Fifa World Cup qualifiers.

Modiko, the former Banyana Banyana star and Wits University’s women’s team coach, took a 35-member preliminary squad into a week-long camp that ended last Thursday.

She has now trimmed the team to 24 players ahead of the second round qualifiers, which will see Bantwana take on Ethiopia in a two-legged fixture next month.

The camp last week was the second one in less than two months after the first one in November, which also saw the team play two friendly matches against Morocco.

Bantwana travel to Ethiopia for the first leg on February 2 and thereafter host the second leg on February 10 at the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville.

Victory against the tricky Ethiopia will guarantee Modiko and his troops a passage to Bantwana’s third appearance in the Fifa U17 Women’s World Cup after having done so in 2010 and 2018 hosted in Trinidad-and-Tobago and Uruguay respectively.

Bantwana’s first appearance in 2010 saw them finish the first round last with neither points nor goals. They secured their first World Cup point in 2018, via a goalless draw against Mexico.

The next World Cup for under-17 will be held in the Dominican Republic, from October 16 to November 3, this year.

SA under-17 squad
Goalkeepers: Bilguees Salie, Mbali Ndlovu (both from Safa Academy), Casey Gordan (JVW Academy)
Defenders: Bonolo Mokoma (JVW Academy), Bonolo Phoshoko, (Safa Academy), Nomfundo Motaung (Springs Home Sweepers), Sethabile Kamwanda (Mamelodi Sundowns Academy), Aphelele Mhlongo, Samkelo Gwamanda (both Dlala Ntombazane) and Masabata Mothapo (Ixias FC)
Midfielders: Mpho Nkadimeng (Dlala Ntombazana), Zoe October (Cape Town Spurs), Nobahle Mdelwa (La Liga Academy, Spain), Nomaswazi Vilakazi (University of Pretoria), Julia Goncalves, Katleho Mohale (both JVW Academy), Lindelwa Mabuza, Katleho Mabelane (both Mamelodi Sundowns) and Luthando Hadebe (Durban Ladies) 
Forward: Khutso Mogano (Safa Academy), Tshepi Makole (Copperbelt Ladies), Adrielle Mibe (University of Johannesburg), Gugu Mabizela (Mamelodi Sundowns) and Khwezi Khoza (Sunflower WFC)

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