The South African ladies team coach Desiree Ellis also made the country proud when she was named Coach of the Year.
One can read all the tributes from fans and the soccer fraternity for Thembi Kgatlana and Ellis, as expressed on Twitter below.
Kgatlana was crowned the best women's player in Africa in 2018 at a Gala in Dakar, Senegal on Tuesday, after edging out Nigerian duo Asisat Oshoala and Francisca Ordega.
The South African had a tournament to remember as her country finished runners-up at the 2018 Africa Women Cup of Nations in Ghana and secured a maiden Women's World Cup ticket.
Ellis defeated Nigeria's Thomas Dennerby and Cameroon's Joseph Brian Ndoko to the best coach award.
CONGRATULATIONS to the legendary Desiree Ellis as well a legend in the making, Thembi Kgatlana 🎊🎉🎈🍾.
Thank you very much for inspiring our nation 🙌🏾. #CAFAwards18 pic.twitter.com/aA2Yq5dyNM — Official PSL (@OfficialPSL) January 8, 2019
Congratulations to both Desiree Ellis&Thembi Kgatlana for winning Women’s coach of the year&Women’s player of the year. Such moments make us proud as a nation &may you grow from strength to strength in the beautiful game. Now that you have it nobody can take it away from you✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/QbnGAFQ3l4 — SAFPU (@SAFPU_Official) January 8, 2019
How did Kgatlana's goal win the best goal of last year? Haba! 🙄🤔😳#CAFAwards18
The goal scored by the Cameroonian female player was way better than that of Kgatlana's — Obi Kelechi (@OK_0109) January 8, 2019
THEMBI KGATLANA IS THE SECOND SOUTH AFRICAN FOOTBALLER TO BE NAMED THE BEST IN THE CONTINENT. Noko did predict that Thembi and Linda will join her in winning this award. — Njabulo Ngidi (@NJABULON) January 8, 2019
.@CAF_Online ⚽️Awards: congratulations Chrestinah Thembi Kgatlana of South Africa on your Goal of the Year Award, presented by @didierdrogba 👏🏿 pic.twitter.com/CWJZsJvU79 — Fatma Samoura (@fatma_samoura) January 8, 2019
You have played a huge role in my life,especially over the past year. Truly are a leader JJ. Let it not end by me but also guide and help all those who want to learn from you. — Thembi Kgatlana (@KgatlanaJnr11) January 9, 2019
Kgatlana dedicates her award to all the girls who want to be Champions 👏🏾👏🏾— Tshepang Mailwane (@T_Mailwane) January 8, 2019
The Banyana Banyana Lethal Striker Thembi Kgatlana&the Militant SAFPU President Thulaganyo Gaoshubelwe showing off at CAF AWARDS. Success is liking yourself,liking what you do&liking how you do it&Thembi you did it in style(Thank you for your Excellence)🎉🎊@Banyana_Banyana pic.twitter.com/cIUfgCjeVK — SAFPU (@SAFPU_Official) January 8, 2019