Windhoek - Banyana Banyana's African Women's Championship (AWC) campaign got off to a dreadful start after they suffered a 1-0 defeat to Cameroon at the Independence Stadium in Windhoek on Sunday.
An 87th minute strike by Raissa Feudjio secured maximum points for Cameroon in the Group B encounter.
Banyana conceded the late goal courtesy of a defensive fumble in the penalty box from a cornerkick. Banyana goalkeeper Roxanne Barker, who had been brilliant throughout the match, mishandled the delivery and defender Thembi Kgatlana in attempting to clear the ball, placed it in the path of the opposition midfielder Feudjio.
Barker saved the South Africans on numerous occasions in the last quarter of the match -- pulling off great stops to deny the Cameroonians.
The loss dealt a blow to Bayana's dreams of qualifying for their maiden Fifa Women's World Cup next year in Canada.
Only the top three teams at the eight nation tournament would qualify the world showpiece. Banyana are in Group B (Group of Death) alongside Cameroon, Algeria and Ghana.
Banyana fell agonisingly short in 2010 when they finished in the semi-finals of the AWC.
Banyana would look to bounce back when they play Ghana on Wednesday and Algeria thereafter on Saturday. Meanwhile, group A was contested by hosts Namibia, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Zambia.