Amajita coach Senong names strong provisional squad for U20 Afcon

Phakamani Mahlambi has been named in a strong provisional South Africa squad for the CAF U20 Africa Cup of Nations to be held in Zambia next month.

Head coach Thabo Senong on Thursday announced his 31-man party with 20 players coming from four Premier Soccer League clubs - SuperSport United‚ Bidvest Wits Ajax Cape Town and Kaizer Chiefs.

SuperSport dominates the squad with six players followed by Ajax and Wits (both with five players) and Chiefs‚ who contributed as much as four players.

The squad will report for a two-week training camp next week where they will begin their preparations for the 20th edition of the tournament to be held in the capital Lusaka and north-west coal mining city of Ndola from February 26 to March 12.

"This is going to be an intensive camp‚ as it is our first phase of preparations for the year. The technical team and I have already begun with our strategies for our group in the U20 Afcon‚” said Senong.

Amajita are drawn in Group B alongside Senegal‚ Sudan and Cameroon while Group will see hosts and Cosafa Cup champions Zambia will battle it out against Egypt‚ Mali and Guinea.

South Africa have already secured a warm-up match against tournament favourites and hosts Zambia. Amajita will be looking for a great confidence against the Baby Chipolopolo on February 8.

"We intend to have a few international friendly matches before we begin the tournament‚ and we are glad to have secured our first international friendly against Zambia.

The match will be played at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium‚ in Ndola and kick-off is scheduled for 8pm SA time.

"We will be using this friendly to build on the momentum of the last year‚ but mainly to adapt to the climate of Ndola‚" said Senong.

The semi finalists of the 20th edition of the tournament will qualify for the 2017 FIFA U20 World Cup to be played in South Korea from May 20 to June 11‚ 2017.

AMAJITA 2017 U20 AFCON fixtures:

27 February 2017 18h00 Cameroon vs South Africa Levy Mwanawasa Stadium‚ Ndola

2 March 2017 18h00 South Africa vs Senega Levy Mwanawasa Stadium‚ Ndola

5 March 2017 15h00 Sudan vs South Africa Heroes Stadium‚ Lusaka

First phase squad announcement:

GOALKEEPERS:

Sanele Tshabalala Bidvest Wits FC (SA)

Darren Johnson Ajax Cape Town FC (SA)

Mondli Mpoto Supersport United FC (SA)

DEFENDERS

Aghmat Ceres Ajax Cape Town FC (SA)

Sirgio Kammies Ajax Cape Town FC (SA)

Reeve Frosler Bidvest Wits FC (SA)

Notha Ngcobo Mamelodi Sundowns FC (SA)

Malebogo Modise Mamelodi Sundowns FC (SA)

Katleho Mohamme Supersport United FC (SA)

Givemore Khupe Bidvest Wits FC (SA)

Shane Saralina Ajax Cape Town FC (SA)

Siyabonga Ngezana Kaizer Chiefs FC (SA)

Tercius Malepe Orlando Pirates FC (SA)

MIDFIELDERS:

Thabo Cele Real Sporting Clubbe (Portugal)

Wiseman Meyiwa Kaizer Chiefs FC (SA)

Sipho Mbule Supersport United FC (SA)

Thabani Zuke Golden Arrows FC (SA)

Teboho Mokoena Supersport United FC (SA)

Katlego Ntshabeleng University Of Johannesburg FC (SA)

Sydney Mtshweni Supersport United FC (SA)

Duncan Apollis Cape Town City FC (SA)

Nkosingiphile Ngcobo Kaizer Chiefs FC (SA)

Sibongakonke Mbatha Bidvest Wits FC (SA)

Kobamelo Kodisang Platinum Stars FC (SA)

STRIKERS:

Luther Singh Unattached

Liam Jordan Spoting Lisbon FC ( Portugal)

Luyanda Ntshangase Maritzburg United FC (SA)

Menzi Ndwandwe Amazulu FC (SA)

Itumeleng Shopane Kaizer Chiefs FC (SA)

Khanyisa Mayo Supersport United (SA)

Phakamani Mahlambi Bidvest Wits FC (SA) - TMG Digital

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