Bafana Bafana hovering dangerously close to the abyss

02 June 2016 - 20:33 By Mninawa Ntloko

Howls of displeasure could be heard from Polokwane to Cape Town when Keagan Dolly was left out of the Bafana Bafana squad that faced Cameroon in back-to-back 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers in March.Fans of the silky-skilled Mamelodi Sundowns player couldn’t fathom why Mashaba did not fight for his inclusion in the senior national team and allowed the midfielder to be named in an SA under-23 side that played against Brazil in a friendly match in the same month.Social media‚ radio stations and newspapers were the battlegrounds of choice and the Bafana coach had to whether a furious storm that at times threatened to consume him.Bafana’s qualifying campaign was laid to waste a few days later after two drawn matches against the Indomitable Lions (0-0 and 2-2) and many South African A fans keep wondering if things could have turned out differently had Dolly been part of the national team.Bafana’s qualifying campaign is now hanging by the thinnest of threads and a defeat or a draw against Gambia on Saturday will officially put Mashaba’s charges out of their misery.Dolly is part of the squad in Gambia and he seems to have quickly bought into the optimism that Mashaba continues to harbour about qualifying.The Bafana coach has argued that while his charges are under the cosh and hovering dangerously close to the abyss‚ he continues to retain a level of optimism that is not shared by many fellow holders of green South African identity books.Dolly said on Thursday he hopes that Bafana will be able to grind out a positive result in Gambia and remain in contention for possible qualification in next year's continental showpiece in Gabon.Bafana rely on the unlikely event of group leaders Cameroon losing both their last two games to qualify for Gabon.But the Indomitable Lions can wrap up qualification if they are able to beat second-placed Mauritania away from home on Friday...

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