Even though South African Women's' national team Banyana Banyana did not return home with the African Women's Cup of Nations over the weekend, they can surely be proud of themselves.
Reaching the final ensured that the team qualified for the Fifa Women’s World Cup for the first time and Thembi Kgatlana was awarded the best player of the tournament.
The game ended scoreless after regulation time and remained that way after 30 minutes of extra time, Nigeria beat South Africa 4-3 in a penalty shootout.
However, there are a lot of questions, particularly in terms of the disparity in match fees between Banyana Banyana and their male counterparts Bafana Bafana.
Speaking to Bongani Bingwa Acting CEO of the South African Football Association (Safa) Russel Paul says Banyana has done the nation proud.
They have nothing to be sad about. We have nothing to be sad about as a nation. They put their best foot forward. They carried the match with pride. They had their hearts on their sleeves and they were warriors for all of us.— Russel Paul, Acting CEO Safa
They did us proud and restored pride in terms of a winning culture.— Russel Paul, Acting CEO Safa
When asked why there hasn't been a women's league in South Africa, he says that it is quite indicative of the corporate environment with men generally get the bulk of the sponsorship while women get none.
Corporates don't want to put their money where their mouths are. They are happy to celebrate when everyone wins, when there is a success then everybody wants to jump on the bandwagon.— Russel Paul, Acting CEO Safa
Listen below to the full interview: