South Africa Women’s National Team coach Desiree Ellis has expressed her reservations about the cancellation of the 2020 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Confederation of African Football announced the cancellation of its flagship women’s tournament last Tuesday, including the men’s Africa Cup of Nations due to the global health crisis.
Banyana Banyana tactician, who won back-to-back CAF Women’s Coach of the Year awards, insists the AWCON cancellation is ‘shattering a few dreams’.
“A lot of players were looking forward to the 2020 Afcon, and for many, it might have been ‘I want to win it before I hang up my boots’, or ‘this is my last opportunity to really go’, and now it is practically almost three years away. So you’re shattering a few dreams,” Ellis said.
“It puts a lot of pressure on everyone. It would have been fantastic to have that format right now so that you can go and challenge yourself to see how you can plan and prepare.
“We are just hoping that the regional tournaments could happen because that is going to be the saving grace now where you have Cecafa, Wafu, Unifac and Cosafa.’’
Ellis guided South Africa to a fourth final of the Awcon at the 2018 edition in Ghana, where they qualified for the first time to the 2019 Women’s World Cup before a Cosafa Cup triumph.