Banyana add Norway to their FIFA Women's World Cup preparations

South Africa's players will have faced nine international challengers in 2019 by the time they face Spain on 8 June. Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

South Africa's national women's football team, Banyana Banyana, have added a final friendly to their pre-World Cup schedule, and will face Norway on 2 June in France.

Banyana will be participating in their first-ever FIFA Women's World Cup come June, and have lined up some staunch competition in preparation, including defending champions USA on 12 May in California.

The task will be made slightly easier in that Ballon d'Or holder Ada Hegerberg will not be in Norway's line-up, having withdrawn her name from contention in 2017 in protest against the way the women's game is run in Norway.

Coach Desiree Ellis said of facing the 12th-ranked Norwegians for the first time: "We could not have asked for better preparations looking at our programme - and now to add Norway to the mix is just great.

"They are a great team, and their record speak volumes - world champs in 1995, UEFA winners in 1987 and 1983 as well as Olympic gold in 2000 - shows they are no pushovers and will give us the final test before we enter the biggest stage of our careers, so this has really come at a very good time.

"This is exactly what we needed. The clash against Norway is the final fixture before we kickoff our first match of the competition, so everything has to go according to plan.

"We don't want a situation where say we are lacking here or there, and there is no time to work on those - with this encounter we will be able to see just how far we are and where we need to fix, just in time for the World Cup."

The Norway match will be Banyana's final test before the tournament begins in Paris, with the Janine van Wyk-led side's first task being Spain on 8 June.