Cape Verde Islands achieved a surprising 2-1 victory over South Africa in Durban on Tuesday, catapulting themselves into World Cup contention and leaving Bafana with slim chances.
Cape Verde’s Garry fired two long-range strikes in the second half, becoming the hero of the match.
This is South Africa’s second defeat against Cape Verde in the qualifiers. A week ago, the islanders defeated the Bafana Bafana 2-1 in Praia.
With these results, South Africa sit bottom of Group D with four points. Burkina Faso head the group with 9, followed by Cape Verde, who also have six points but are four goals behind in goal difference. Senegal, with five, rest in the third spot.
Slim chances for South Africa
Bafana’s hopes of reaching the World Cup are not over yet. But they will have to win their two remaining matches, hosting the first one against Burkina Faso, and visiting Senegal in their final game.
Yet it is not completely in the Bafana’s hands. South Africa will also need to hope that Cape Verde do not win their two remaining matches. The hosts of the 2010 World Cup can still finish with ten points, a realistic tally to win the group, since no team has taken a strong a strong grasp of proceedings
Only the group winners qualify to the World Cup. The two upcoming rounds are set to be played on October 7 and November 6.
Cape Verde eyeing a fairytale qualification
The Cape Verde Islands, a West-African archipelago with just over 500,000 inhabitants, are in strong contention for a shock trip to Russia.
The Blue Sharks, as they are known, have never qualified for World Cup. The two successive victories over South Africa put them level on points with group leaders Burkina Faso.
“It is the dream of every footballer to go to the World Cup. It’s the biggest tournament in the world. I dream about that and for me, nothing is impossible,” said Cape Verde striker Garry Rodrigues after their second victory over South Africa.
If Cape Verde manage to qualify for the World Cup, they will certainly be the smallest nation participating in the competition.