Female Zebras restore national pride

Raising hopes: The women's team beat their Madagascar counterparts 3- 1 in the first leg of the All Africa Games qualifiers
Raising hopes: The women's team beat their Madagascar counterparts 3- 1 in the first leg of the All Africa Games qualifiers

The women’s national football team restored some national pride with a 3-1 away win over Madagascar on Sunday in the first leg of the All Africa Games qualifiers.

The match played at a rain soaked Municipal Stadium of Mahamasina, forced the women Zebras’ coach, Galetlhoo ‘Ronaldo’ Nkutlwisang to change tactics due to the waterlogged pitch.

“We wanted to keep the ball, playing a passing game, but due to the conditions we had to rely on counter attacks,” she told Mmegi Sport yesterday.

The change in tactics seemed to work in the visitors’ favour as Double Action striker, Thuto Ramafifi gave Zebras the lead within two minutes.


Township Rollers midfielder, Amogelang Moahi doubled Botswana’s advantage midway through the first half after yet another counter attack.

The third goal came as a Madagascan defender turned the ball into her own net before the hosts drew one back in the second half.

The female Zebras finished the match with 10 players after Rollers right back, Tlamelo Motlhale was sent off in the second half.

The Zebras technical team argued the player had made what looked like a clean tackle, but the referee thought otherwise. 

“The referee was a little bit unfair on our side. I believe some of his decisions favoured the home side,” Nkutlwisang complained.

Despite being largely ignored compared to their male counterparts, Nkutlwisang said the girls should continue with their performances and not get distracted. She attributed the good showing to the two months spent in camp preparing for the game.

The team is injury free as they prepare for the return leg in a fortnight at a venue to be decided.

The result is refreshing for a nation, which watched the male Zebras string together, a six-game winless streak in the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

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