Banyana beaten by Czech Republic at Cyprus Cup

South Africa have finished their pool play at the 2019 Cyprus Cup with a disappointing 2-1 loss to Czech Republic at a rain-drenched Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium in Larnaca on Monday.

Banyana Banyana had led at halftime thanks to a goal from veteran Mamello Makhabane, while their opponents were also reduced to 10 players following a red card for Andrea Jarchovska.

But the FIFA Women’s World Cup-bound Banyana could not contain a rampant Czech side in the second half and finished the group with a single point from their three matches.

They will now face a play-off game on Wednesday against an as yet unknown opponent, where they will continue to fine-tune in the build-up to the global showpiece tournament in France in June-July.

Banyana made a good start and were rewarded for their adventure when Makhabane took a pass from Linda Motlhalo and fired them in front.

But once the heavens opened in the second period, the game swung the way of the Czechs, who handled the wet conditions better and twice hit the crossbar before Kamila Dubcova found an equaliser with 10 minutes remaining.

Banyana’s misery was compounded when Dubcova added a second a minute from the end.