South Africa female national team on Wednesday beat Italy 3-2 to secure a place in the round of 16 of the Women’s World Cup after Thembi Kgatlana scored a last-gasp winner
South Africa got their first ever Women’s World Cup win after Kgatlana struck two minutes into stoppage time to send her team off to Sydney for a clash with Netherlands on Sunday.
It was an unfortunately situation for the Italians, who only needed a draw to progress to the next round.
Before the Italians were shown the way out of the tournament, Arianna Caruso made meaningful efforts by scoring from a corner in the 74th minute to salvage the draw they needed to move to the next round.
Interestingly, Italy opened the scoring when Karabo Dhlamini tripped Italy forward Chiara Beccari just inside the box in the 10th minute and Caruso converted the penalty with a confident shot into the bottom left corner of the net.
The die hard spirit of the South Africans paid off for them as they equalised in the 32nd minute through an own goal from Benedetta Orsi, who did not check where goalkeeper Francesca Durante was before making a back pass.
In the match, South Africa kept working hard as they went ahead for the first time in the 67th minute when Kgatlana’s neat inside pass found Hildah Magaia free behind the defensive line and the forward swept it into the net.
Caruso answered seven minutes later from a corner when the ball caught her hip in a goalmouth scramble and cannoned into the bottom right corner of the goal.
It looked as though Italy might hang on for the draw in a frantic finale but Magaia’s pass found Kgatlana in the box and the striker smashed the ball into the net to secure second place in the group behind Sweden.