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33 for Banyana camp
- Updated: February 17, 2011
Banyana Banyana caretaker coach Joseph Mkhonza has called up 33 players to be put through an intensified training and testing programme at the national training camp to be held in Stellenbosch from February 17-25.
The national training camp, made possible through the support of Sport and Recreation SA and national team sponsor Sasol, is an important phase of the national squad’s preparations ahead of their next Olympic qualifying fixture, at home to Tunisia on April 2.
With a 100% winning streak in the three matches that he has been in charge of Banyana Banyana since December last year, Mkhonza has even more reason to smile after receiving the news that key players in midfielder Gabisile Hlumbane and Yola Jafta are off the injury list and ready to challenge for inclusion in the national team for the fisture against the Tunisians.
Hlumbane, who plays for Kovsies FC in the Free State Sasol League, added a new dimension to the Banyana Banyana midfield when introduced to international football in the second half of last year, while the University of Johannesburg FC’s Jafta is equally at home in the centre of defence or in a holding midfield role.
Another player who is set to push for a return to the centre of defence is Port Elizabeth-based Amanda Sister. One of the finds of 2010, Sister formed a consistent rearguard partnership with Janine van Wyk during Banyana Banyana’s bronze medal-winning performance at the CAF African Women Championship 2010 held in Ekurhuleni near Johannesburg last November.
Right wing midfielder Nocawe Skiti, aptly nicknamed ‘Speedy’, also makes a return to the squad after a lengthy injury lay-off but of late has been in fine form for her club Cape Town Roses, serious title contenders in the Western Cape Sasol League.
ÔÇ£The 33-person squad includes several players that have been indentified during the Players Trials at the Sasol League Road Shows which are held in each of the nine provinces during the season and this provides a wider range of quality to analyse for international competitions in what is a busy 2011 campaign,ÔÇØ said Mkhonza.
Apart from the encounter against the Tunisians on April 2, Banyana Banyana will also take on the Tunisians in the return fixture in the week on the weekend of April 23-24, before being involved in All-Africa Games qualifying matches on a home and away basis against Botswana on April 30 and May 14.
The full training camp squad: Thoko Mndaweni, Yolula Tsawe, Mandy D’Araujo, Mantombi Njungqi, Simphiwe Dludlu, Nothando Vilakazi, Janine van Wyk, Simphiwe Masina, Robyn Moodley, Mantombi Radebe, Mary Ntsweng, Nomawethu Nyusani, Sbongiseni Khamlana, Elson Matjila, Keneilwe Mathibela, Zama Cele, Mamello Makhabane, Martha Mokoma, Amanda Dlamini, Noko Matlou, Leandra Smeda, Mamphashe Popela, Ntsisana Mputle, Gabisile Hlumbane, Lerato Maleka, Amanda Sister, Andisiwe Mgcoyi, Nocawe Skiti, Memory Makhanya, Sanelisiewe Mavundla, Rachel Sebati, Yola Jafta, Lerato Kgasago