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Thapelo Morena’s Brace Secures Crucial Win For Bafana Bafana



Bafana Bafana kept their 2026 FIFA World Cup hopes alive with a convincing 3-1 victory against Zimbabwe at Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein on Tuesday night.

The match began with a bang as Iqraam Rayners opened the scoring in the first minute, only for Zimbabwe’s Tawanda Chirewa to equalize immediately, leaving the packed stadium in suspense.

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The first half was a rollercoaster of emotions for Bafana Bafana and their fans. Despite creating numerous chances, the South African team struggled to convert, with Rayners, Aubrey Modiba, Oswin Appollis, and Themba Zwane all coming close but being thwarted by Zimbabwe’s goalkeeper Geoffrey Chitsumba.

The teams went into the break with the score locked at 1-1, setting the stage for an intense second half.

Coach Hugo Broos made a crucial substitution at the start of the second half, bringing on Thapelo Morena for Elias Mokwana.

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This decision paid off handsomely as Morena scored two vital goals, first capitalizing on a fumbled cross from Appollis in the 55th minute and then sprinting down the middle to score again in the 74th minute. His brace secured a much-needed win for Bafana Bafana and delighted the home crowd.

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With this victory, Bafana Bafana are now second in Group C with seven points, trailing leaders Rwanda only on goal difference and ahead of third-placed Benin. Nigeria, the group heavyweights, have had a disappointing start with just three points from four matches.

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Bafana’s improved performances under Coach Broos, including a bronze medal at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, have reignited hopes and support from their fans. The victory against Zimbabwe also brought back memories of their 2010 World Cup opener against Mexico, celebrated for Siphiwe Tshabalala’s spectacular goal.

Bafana Bafana’s journey to the 2026 World Cup continues with optimism and determination, as they look forward to their remaining qualifying matches, including an away game against Benin.

The team and their supporters are hopeful for a successful campaign, inspired by recent achievements and strong performances.

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