Nonhlanhla ‘Gaddafi’ Mthandi has expressed her utmost excitement after Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies beat Double Action Ladies 2-0 to secure their second COSAFA zonal qualifier title and book a place at the prestigious CAF Women’s Champions League in Ivory Coast in November.
Red-hot Chuene Morifi grabbed the opening goal before Gaddafi’s second-half strike ensured Banyana Ba Style’s victory in the winner-take-all clash against the Botswana side.
The Brazilians also emerged as the top scorers of the tournament, netting an impressive 21 goals across six games. Lelona Daweti, Tiisetso Makhubela, Andisiwe Mgcoyi and Chuene Morifi each scored three goals apiece to finish as the top scorers. Additionally, Downs secured five clean sheets, showcasing a flawless performance in Durban.
Mthandi expressed the significance of the victory for the team, stating, “It was a relief for everyone, especially considering we lost last year’s final. The coaches emphasized the importance of winning the tournament and failure was not an option. It was a mandate that echoed with everyone throughout the tournament and we are thrilled that we emerged as the victors. We take pride in our performances and on a personal note, I am excited to have scored in the final to secure the trophy.”
Despite not scoring in the final, Boitumelo Rabale was adjudged the Player of the Match due to her explosive runs and overall performance. Her strike partner, Andisiwe Mgcoyi, however, scooped the overall Golden Boot Award. Masandawana also claimed the Golden Boot of the COSAFA tournament with Andile Dlamini taking home the Goalkeeper of the Tournament award.
By securing qualification, Banyana Ba Style not only reclaimed their regional title, previously held by Green Buffaloes, whom they defeated in the semi-finals, but they also earned an opportunity to compete for the continental crown they had lost to Morocco’s AS FAR last year.
Before the final clash, Mozambique’s Costa Do Sol secured the third spot by defeating defending champions Green Buffaloes of Zambia 2-1. Strikes from Neide Maconho and Emilia Cazembe proved to be enough for Mozambique to make history.
The CAF Women’s Champions League will take place between November 5th and 19th, contested by 8 clubs, with this season’s winners guaranteed USD 400,000. By appearing in Ivory Coast, Sundowns have now reached their third consecutive CAF Women’s Champions League as representatives of the COSAFA region.
Congratulations to our indefatigable Ladies!!!