Karabo Angel ‘Cream’ Dhlamini will be aiming to make her presence felt at the FIFA Women’s World Cup, which gets underway from July 20 to August 20, 2023, in Australia and New Zealand.
The versatile fullback was part of the South African squad that made its debut at the prestigious tournament in 2019 but did not make an appearance in France. Nevertheless, she remembers fondly her favorite moment.
“The memory of our first World Cup goal, scored by Thembi Kgatlana against Spain, will forever be etched in my mind. That moment will hold a special place in my heart, serving as a reminder of our capabilities. As we prepare for the upcoming tournament, our aspirations extend beyond the epic moment we experienced four years ago. We are determined to give our all on the pitch, not only to make our mark in the tournament but also to inspire the next generation of athletes. We want to show young girls that anything is possible with hard work, determination and a never-give-up attitude,” Karabo stated.
Dhlamini was a constant presence as Banyana Banyana clinched their first-ever Women’s Cup of Nations title in Morocco last year, making five appearances at the competition. She was also part of the South African squad that secured the 2020 COSAFA Women’s Championship.
The left-footed defender, who also plays as a defensive midfielder, is hoping for further success with the national team.
“I feel incredibly honored to once again have the opportunity to represent my country on such a grand stage. My primary objective is to contribute my best efforts to ensure our success in Australia and New Zealand. We are fully aware of the challenges that await us and we have diligently prepared ourselves to face whatever comes our way. My sincere hope is to make a meaningful contribution that will play a crucial role in our team’s triumph,” Dhlamini added.
When asked about her personal goals at the upcoming World Cup tournament, Karabo expressed her aspirations by saying, “I am eagerly looking forward to making a lasting impact. Beyond the scope of this World Cup, my deepest desire is to make a significant contribution that not only inspires others but also exemplifies the immense talent and untapped potential within our country. I aim to leave a remarkable legacy, one that echoes far beyond the tournament, instilling a sense of belief and motivation in future generations.”
Karabo, who is no stranger to Sundowns Ladies, represented the Tshwane giants from 2015 to 2020. During her time with the team, she was part of the set-up that clinched the Hollywoodbets Super League titles in both 2019 and 2020.
After a loan spell at Oakland University and playing for the Golden Grizzlies in the United States of America, she made a return to her team last season. Her contribution played a vital role in helping Banyana Ba Style secure the Hollywoodbets Super League title last year. Additionally, she played a key role as they reached the finals of both the CAF Women’s Champions League and the COSAFA regional qualifiers.
Wishing Karabo and the entire Banyana Banyana team all the best at the World Cup!