Bafana snub King’s Cup invitation

March will see national teams regroup for the first time in 2018, as the 32 World Cup teams kick-start their final preparations for the showpiece in June, while the rest engage in friendly internationals.

Bafana are one such nation that will be competing for their FIFA ranking rather than fine tuning their skills for Russia, and had been earmarked for a trip to Bangkok.

However, SAFA have since turned down an invitation from the Football Association of Thailand, hoping to secure higher-profile opposition than the participating nations – Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Gabon and Slovakia.

“That trip to Thailand won’t be happening. We received an invite, but we are always eager to improve Bafana Bafana’s ranking to where we want it to be,” SAFA spokesman Dominic Chimhavi tells

“If we are to do that then we can’t be competing against just anyone, we have to play a top-ranked African or European team.”

It’s been reported that Holland, who have also failed to qualify for this year’s World Cup finals, could be one of the two teams set to challenge Bafana, but Chimhavi refused to comment on the speculation, insisting that an official announcement will be made soon.

South Africa have moved one spot up in the latest FIFA rankings released on Thursday, and are currently ranked 77th in the world and 16th in Africa.