Manzini: Sihlangu got their first point of the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers after playing to a goalless draw against Congo Brazaville at Mavuso Sports Centre on Monday afternoon.
The result means Sihlangu hopes of a first ever AFCON qualification are slim as the race for a place in Cameroon is solely dependent on other results and must wins in the last two matches of Group I against Guinea-Bissau (home) and Senegal (away) next year March.
|2022 AFCON QUALIFIERS GROUP I|
Dominic Kunene and his charges had a few opportunities to win the match that was in all honesty evenly balanced with Felix Badenhorst forcing a great reflex save from the visitors’ goalkeeper as early as the 11th minute. Second half substitute Wandile ‘Skosh’ Shabangu saw his effort bounce off the upright after 78 minutes with the national team’s biggest chance coming two minutes into added time where Phiwayinkhosi Dlamini sent his effort over the bar after getting behind the Congolese backline.
Livewire Fanelo ‘Order’ Mamba perfectly lofted the ball for Phiwa who brought the ball down with his chest but with pressure from the recovering defence, he sent his effort over to sum up not just a frustrating afternoon for the ‘nation’s pride’ but also a gravel qualification campaign.
Sandanezwe Mathabela, Lindo Mkhonta, Sanele Chauke, Siboniso Mamba, Sikhumbuzo Magagula, Sabelo Gamedze (Wandile Shabangu), Mzwandile Mabelesa, Sifiso Matse, Fanelo Mamba, Felix Badenhorst (Phiwa Dlamini), Sandile Gamedze (Njabulo Tfwala)
Sandanezwe Mathabela returned to the starting line-up for Sihlangu after missing the away trip to Congo as Ncamiso ‘Mbhonyo’ Dlamini could not play any part after suffering an injury. Sihlangu remain bottom of the log with just a point and with six to play for next match, the team can only go as far as seven points.