The Super Falcons of Nigeria clinched their 9th African Women Cup of Nations (AWCON) title after they defeated the South African national team 4-3 on penalties at the Accra Sports Stadium, Accra, Ghana.
Nigeria’s keeper Tochukwu Oluehi, who was the Falcons’ savior during the semis against the Cameroonians, came to the rescue of the team once again as she saved the last penalty kick by Linda Mothlalo to deny the Banyana Banyana at the sixth time of asking.
It was the South Africans who started the brighter of the teams in the early proceedings as Oluehi parried shots from Chrestina Kgatlana and Mamelo Makhabade.
The Falcons took time to get their groove in the game and once they did, the South Africans were resilient enough in their defending as goalie, Kaylin Swart also played a part in thwarting the efforts of the Falcons to keep the scores goaless going into the interval.
In the second half, Oshoala had an opportunity to give Nigeria the victory in regulation time after Francisca Ordega was brought down by Swart in the 18 yard box, but the striker fluffed her lines when she missed from the penalty spot.
With hostilities all squared after extra time, the match went into penalties, and it was Oluehi who stood tall between the sticks for Nigeria, punching away the South Africans’ last spot kick after Onome Ebi had earlier missed for Nigeria.
Nigeria, South Africa and Cameroon will be the teams to represent Africa at the FIFA Women’s World Cup next year in France.