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MBABANE – Introduction of tournaments during off-season would maybe put Eswatini women football in the position of Banyana Banyana one day.

These were the exact words of Eswatini Women’s Football Association (EWFA) Chief Operations Officer (COO) Ntandoyenkosi Hlatjwayo. She felt that for women football to develop, more tournaments were needed. This was after the South Africa women national football team, fondly known as Banyana Banyana, qualified for the Last 16 of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, which is currently taking place in Australia and New Zealand.  Hlatjwayo revealed that the neighbouring country had the privilege of having many leagues, while in Eswatini there is just one mainstream league.


“Banyana Banyana has leagues that are surrounding them, hence the support and influx of players, which makes their national team to be strong. There is also the issue of money and the mere fact that their league is professional, which automatically puts them at an advantage,” she said. She further revealed that the unavailability of enough sponsors and the obvious lack of funds limited them from having proper preparations, that would also enable them to have tournaments during the off-season period to keep the players fit. “Our season ended in May. Our players have been doing nothing since then,” she said. Hlatjwako went on to mention that when the season started again, a lot would have been lost. As a result, they had to start teaching the skills from scratch. Meanwhile, the COO congratulated the SA women’s team for their knockout qualifications. “This is obviously good news for the continent and as a country we remain inspired by their achievements,” she shared.