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African Women’s Championship resurrects old rivalries

Hosts South Africa will play the opening game of next months African Women’s Championship against Tanzania.

They will also play against Mali and former champions Nigeria in Group A.

Group B consists of defending champions Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Cameroon and Algeria.

The tournament takes place from 29 October to 14 November, with the champions and runners-up representing the continent at the Fifa Women’s World Cup in Germany next year.

Of the eight teams at the competition, Tanzania are the only debutants.

Mali have not qualified for the event since 2002 while Algeria’s Lady Fennecs have been to two previous editions in 2006 and 2004.

Holders Equatorial Guinea caused an upset by beating South Africa in the final of the competition which they hosted in 2008.

Five-time champions Super Falcons of Nigeria will be hoping to wrest back the title which they last won in 2006.

South Africa (hosts)

Ghana’s Black Queens, Indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon and South Africa’s Banyana Banyana have also participated in every single edition since 1998, along with Nigeria.

Speaking at the ceremony for the draw in Ekurhuleni Municipality, President of the South African Football Association Kirsten Nematandani said this is a good time for football in the country.

Equatorial Guinea (holders)

“After we so successfully hosted the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the Caf African Women Championship gives us a wonderful opportunity to build on that momentum and shift the focus onto the cream of women’s football on the African continent,” he said.

“With the title of African champions and [two coveted places] at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany at stake, the action on the pitch is sure to be frenetic and hard-fought,” he continued.

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