WAFCON Q/F: Covid-19 hits South African Team, Top Players Affected

The camp of the Banyana Banyana of South Africa is in disarray, following the outbreak of coronavirus ahead of their quarter-final clash with Tunisia on Thursday.

This was confirmed in a statement released on South Africa Football Association (SAFA) website on Tuesday

Banyana Banyana finished as group winners in Group C after winning all their three games.

But they will now have to face Tunisia without some of their players who tested positive for COVID-19.

Recall star forward Thembi Kgatlana has been ruled out of the tournament due to a serious injury.

The statement from SAFA read:“Banyana Banyana will be forced to soldier on without a number of players after positive Covid-19 cases emerged in camp in Rabat, Morocco.

“The South African senior national team is preparing for a crunch Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (WAFCON) quarter-final match against Tunisia on Thursday, 14 July 2022 and a win against the North Africans will also ensure that coach Desiree Ellis’ charges are one of the four continental sides to qualify for the 2023 World Cup to be co- hosted by Australia and New Zealand.”

Speaking to www.safa.net, Banyana team physician Dr Rodney Mokoka said:“We had one official who tested positive before the Burundi game [in the group stages of the tournament]. The official was isolated and treated as she was symptomatic.

“And 48 hours prior to the Botswana game [the final group stage match], we had one player who tested positive for Covid-19 and she was also symptomatic. She was put in quarantine and treated accordingly. Her asymptomatic roommate who tested negative is in isolation, hence they both missed Botswana game.”

Despite the setback, Banyana coach Desiree Ellis has maintained a positive outlook ahead of another round of Covid-19 tests that will be conducted before the match on Thursday

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