Bafana Bafana captain Thulani Hlatshwayo is optimistic that they will reach the knockout stages of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Egypt.

Bafana will play against Morocco, Ivory Coast and Namibia in Group D. Bafana bowed out of the group stages at the 2015 Afcon in Equatorial Guinea after they finished rock bottom in a group comprising of Senegal, Algeria and Ghana.

Various SA national teams disappointed this weekend including the Cricket national team, Bafana team coached by David Notoane in the COSAFA Cup, the Under-20 national team and Banyana Banyana. Hlatshwayo is confident they will make the nation proud in the AFCON.

AFCON will be staged in June/July for the first time since it was moved from the January/February period. Hlatshwayo says it has been a long season for them.

Hlatshwayo had a season that was interrupted by injuries. The versatile defender says he has fully recovered. He also spoke about the position he prefers playing in. – Report by Vincent Sitsula