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South Africa U17s to Quarter Finals as South Sudan’s age cheating scandal revealed


South Africa U17s to Quarter Finals as South Sudan’s age cheating scandal revealed

South Africa made it via to the quarter-finals of the U17 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) and will play towards Senegal on Wednesday.

After prevailing solely one of their three Group B suits and incomes three points, the Amajimbos have been on the brink of returning domestic from host kingdom Algeria.

They misplaced 2-0 to Morocco in their opening Afcon game, however then bounced lower back with a 3-2 win towards Zambia, a group they had before misplaced to twice in December 2022.

The group started packing their baggage after they suffered a disappointing 3-2 defeat to Nigeria in their closing crew suit on Saturday.

However, thanks to the Cameroon upset on Sunday, the SA U17 outfit snuck through to the knockout rounds of the tournament as one of the two best ranked third-placed teams alongside Congo, after the Confederation of African Football (CAF) disqualified South Sudan for age cheating last weekend.

The decision nullified all results against the fourth-placed teams with South Africa losing all their points as a consequence. They had to wait on the seemingly unlikely outcome of Sunday’s match between defending champions Cameroon and Burkina Faso.

The latter came from a goal down to stun Cameroon 2-1, which saw SA hopes float once more as defeat left the Cameroonians on zero points but with an inferior goal difference of -3 to South Africa.


As a result, Duncan Crowie’s team proceeded to the quarter-finals and also keep their hopes of World Cup qualification alive.

“I think everything started before the game between Cameroon and the Burkina Faso,” Crowie told reporters via SAFA media.

“We played and the idea was to win the game against Nigeria for us to go through [and] not to wait for anybody like we did last night for the Cameroon and Burkina Faso [result].

“But the permutations became very complicated after South Sudan was disqualified and meaning the third-place teams need to be calculated somehow.

“But of course, the boys, all of us are over the moon and looking forward to the encounter against Senegal in the quarter-final.”

Victory on Wednesday would not only secure a semi-final ticket, but also book their passage to the U17 FIFA World Cup in Peru later this year.

Crowie acknowledges that the upcoming match against Senegal will be challenging, as they have a 100 percent record in the tournament so far.

However, the coach believes his players are motivated and ready for the encounter, knowing that a win would secure their place in the World Cup.

“If they’re not motivated now, nothing will ever motivate them, because if they win this game, they qualify for the World Cup,” said Crowie.

“And as you’ve mentioned, Senegal has got 100 percent record. This is probably the best team that we’re coming up against. So, it’s going to be a tough one as well.”

The quarter-final match between South Africa and Senegal is scheduled to kick off at 18:00 (SA time) on Wednesday.

South Africa U17s to Quarter Finals as South Sudan’s age cheating scandal revealed

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