CAF Wafcon Champions Banyana Banyana will face Costa Rica in an international friendly ahead of the FIFA Women’s World Cup. The match will be played in Nga Puna Wai Sports Complex in Christchurch, New Zealand, on 15 July 2023.

It will form part of coach Desiree Ellis’ preparations for the World Cup which will be held in Australia and New Zealand from 20 July-20 August 2023.


Ellis said she was happy to be facing a side that has qualified for the World Cup. She also expects them to give her players a good test before the tournament gets underway.

“I am really excited to be playing against Costa Rica,” she said. 

“This will be our last match before the World Cup starts. They qualified through a tough campaign in the CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers.

“So another World Cup-bound team. We’re really looking forward to the match and to be able to just finally, you know, cross our t’s and dot our i’s just before the World Cup starts.”

Banyana Banyana to face Costa Rica in international friendly before the Women's World Cup
Banyana Banyana during a COSAFA Cup match

Banyana Banyana were drawn against Sweden, Italy and Argentina in the World Cup.

SAFA CEO Lydia Monyepao says the Costa Ricans will be ideal preparation for what the South African senior women’s national team can expect in Group G.

“The friendly match against Costa Rica is crucial in our preparations for this FIFA Women’s World Cup,” she said. 

“We are aiming higher in this tournament, and the rehearsal against Costa Rica will give us an idea of one of our group opponents, Argentina.”

Also read: FIFA finalises bidding requirements for 2027 Women’s World Cup

Banyana will also be going to the World Cup for the second time in a row. This follows their debut in France in 2019.

“We wish the Banyana Banyana team the best of luck in their friendly match against Costa Rica. We believe it will give our team good practice just before they compete on the world stage.

“It’s also a call on all South Africans to continue to send their messages of support to Banyana Banyana via WhatsApp at 072 603 7325 or USSD by dialling *120*676#.

“Let us all remember that as South Africans, our support will give the team all the energy they require to push hard at all their upcoming matches, including this friendly match. And to Banyana Banyana, go live the impossible in Australia and New Zealand! Sasol is behind you all the way,” said Nozipho Mbatha, Sasol Senior Manager: Group Brand and Sponsorship.


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