Nigeria celebrates lifting the trophy during the 2018 TOTAL African Womens Cup of Nations Final match between Nigeria and South Africa at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium, Cape Coast on 01 December 2018 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Saturday Dec 01, 2018. 22:03
Nigeria defeated South Africa 4-3 on penalties after a 0-0 draw in the 2018 Africa Women's Cup of Nations (AWCN) final at the Accra Sports Stadium in Ghana on Saturday.
The win saw the Super Eagles defend their AWCN title, while Banyana Banyana settled for the runners-up spot.
Banyana Banyana threatened first through their main striker Jermaine Seoposenwe a few minutes into the game.
However, Nigeria goalkeeper Tochukwu Oluehi made a comfortable save to deny the South Africans.
Banyana midfielder Leandra Smeda then tried to beat Oluehi from range in the 10th minute, but the ball went over the crossbar.
The Super Falcons then grew into the game with Asisat Oshoala keeping the Banyana defence very busy with her movement and skills.
South Africa goalkeeper Kaylin Swart was called into action in the 24th minute and she denied Nigeria midfielder Ngozi Okobi.
The Banyana defence which was led by Janine Van Wyk were able to contain the Super Falcons until Zambian referee Gladys Lengwe blew the half-time whistle.
The score was 0-0 at the interval between Nigeria and South Africa.
The two teams continued to attack each other after the restart as they looked to break the deadlock.
South Africa suffered a blow after the hour-mark as Smeda went down injured and she was replaced by Noko Matlou, who is a defender by trade.
Nigeria were awarded a penalty after Francisca Ordega was fouled by shot-stopper Swart inside the Banyana box with 16 minutes left on the clock.
Oshoala then stepped up and the 2017 African Women's Footballer of the Year missed the target from the spot-kick as South Africa survived a scare.
Nigeria and South Africa were unable to find the winning goal in the closing stages of the game and extra-time followed after a 0-0 draw in regulation time.
The two teams launched attacks in extra-time, but Oluehi and Swart made some good saves to ensure that the score remained 0-0.
Ultimately, the match ended in a 0-0 draw after extra-time and a penalty shootout followed.
Nigeria went on to win 4-3 on penalties after South Africa midfielder Linda Motlhalo's penalty was saved by Oluehi.
Nigeria (0) 0
South Africa (0) 0
Nigeria: Oluehi, Chukwunonye, Ohale, Ebi, Ebere, Chikwelu, Ayinde, Okobi, Ordega (Uchenda 112'), Oshoala, Ajibade (Ihezuo 61').
South Africa: Swart, Ramalepe, Vilakazi, Van Wyk, Mbane, Makhabane, Motlhalo, Kgatlana, Ndimeni (Nyandeni 73'), Smeda (Matlou 67') Seoposenwe.