Cape Town - Banyana Banyana captain Janine Van Wyk described qualifying for the 2019 Women's World Cup as 'the most amazing feeling' after a win over Mali in the semi-finals of the 2018 Women's AFCON, on Tuesday.
Banyana's victory means they've qualified for their maiden FIFA Women's World Cup following their impressive victory at the Cape Coast Stadium in Ghana.
Two goals in each half by forward Thembi Kgatlana and defender Lebohang Ramalepe were enough to secure a place at next year's footballing showpiece to be hosted in France.
South Africa will now face Nigeria in the AFCON final on Saturday at the Accra Sports Stadium - the same team they defeated in the first match of the tournament. Nigeria booked their place by defeating Cameroon on penalties in the other semi-final clash.
Van Wyk, who made her debut in 2005, was delighted having led Banayana Banyana to a World Cup.
"I'm so incredibly proud of this team," Van Wyk said. "I'm proud of how far we have come and how we've performed in this tournament.
"For some of us it's been a long time coming, we've been in this team for quite some time and missed out on numerous opportunities to qualify for a World Cup and here we are still standing, still going strong.
"We've done it, we've qualified for a World Cup and it's the most amazing, amazing feeling.
"It's really emotional for me, if I start going into depth in thinking of how it took me to get here it really gives me a lump in my throat because it really wasn't easy" Van Wyk added.
"It's really been a phenomenal journey, if it wasn't for all the hardships and failures that I went through I wouldn't be here talking about qualifying for a World Cup so I'm really grateful."
No words can describe my emotions right now. Thank you to EVERYONE for the most amazing support & for believing in this team! WE HAVE DONE IT! WE HAVE MADE HISTORY! WE ARE @Banyana_Banyana ???? Now we going for that Gold Medal ?? #AWCON2018— Janine Van Wyk (@Janinevanwyk5) November 27, 2018
YESSSSSSSSSSSS ?????? pic.twitter.com/6Q6YRJtgSr