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AFCON 2023: Williams shows his penalty prowess again as South Africa claim third place

South Africa goalkeeper Ronwen Williams delivered one more heroic performance to give Bafana Bafana some silverware at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations with a 6-5 penalty kick shootout victory over DR Congo following a 0-0 draw in the Third Place Match on Saturday. Williams denied Meschack Elia from the spot, making two saves to overcome an early deficit after Teboho Mokoena missed South Africa’s first penalty. South Africa collect their best finish at the competition since 2000 when Bafana Bafana also finished in third place.

There was some rotation by both coaches for the match but the opening ninety minutes was a rather drab affair. Neither team produced much in the first half outside of some threatening moments and half chances and it was a calm ride for Williams and Congolese keeper Dimitry Bertaud.

Action heated up in the final half hour and it was the Leopards of DR Congo who looked more dangerous. Williams made a dreadful error in the 65th minute when he misjudged and spilled a high ball in his penalty area but Congolese forward Silas Katompa wasted his chance with a shot that went wide. Congolese captain Chancel Mbemba also missed a golden opportunity ten minutes later and Mihalali Mayambela failed to convert on South Africa’s best chance when he had an open look in the 85th minute.

The Congolese appeared headed towards a shootout victory after ninety minutes when Mokoena fired South Africa’s first spot kick off the post. Both teams remained perfect until the fifth frame when Williams denied Mbemba and then saved from Elia on the seventh attempt to confirm a second shootout victory for Bafana Bafana.

Highlights of the Third Place Match will be below when available.

Match Highlights

Penalty Shootout

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