South Africa coach Hugo Broos admits his side were nervous going into their Africa Cup of Nations Group E clash with neighbours Namibia, but an early penalty from Percy Tau settled them down.
Themba Zwane scored twice after that to go with a goal from Thapelo Maseko in a 4-0 victory – Bafana’s biggest ever at the Cup of Nations and the biggest of the tournament in the Ivory Coast so far.
It leaves Bafana likely needing just a point against Tunisia on Wednesday to be sure of qualification for the round of 16, and is a boost of confidence after a limp second half in the 2-0 opening defeat to Mali.
“We knew we had to win the game today to go through the group stages, so we were a little bit nervous at the beginning. But after we scored the first goal, we settled,” Broos told reporters.
“We played a good game having had a good analysis of the opponents. We showed the players where the weaknesses were.
“It is a good win, important for the goal-difference and now we have a boost of confidence for the game against Tunisia, who are a very strong opponent.”
Zwane was sublime for the 70 minutes he was on the pitch and claimed a deserved Man of the Match prize.
“Each game, I go with confidence of scoring goals,” he said. “Players that attack need to score, and I am glad to have scored and received this award. It means a lot to get the Man of the Match award and very happy to get the win today.”
The team is under no illusions that a big task lies ahead against Tunisia.
“We know that it is not over yet. It’s going to be a difficult one against Tunisia. We are going to analyze them properly and come with a plan. We know that we definitely need win to in order to qualify,” Zwane said.
Namibia can still qualify for the knockout stages too. A win or a draw in their final game against Mali will be enough, while even defeat could see them sneak though as one of the best third-placed sides depending on what happens elsewhere.