Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba is happy he will get a look at a couple of new players over South Africa’s next two games.
Striker Thabiso Kutumela and defender Diamond Thopola have been called up to replace injured Ajax Cape Town duo Prince Nxumalo and Rivaldo Coetzee for Friday’s dead-rubber Afcon 2017 qualifier against Mauritania and Tuesday’s friendly against Egypt (both matches kickoff 7.05pm).
Shakes says: “Our mandate when we took over we said we are building a side for 2022.
“The team that went to the Olympics, won the Cosafa Cup in Namibia, and I was in charge of that team assisted by the coach of U23 and U20, so we are on that mission.
“We will try and use all the players in this camp for the matches against Mauritania and Egypt as we want all of them to get some action.”
Bafana defender Thulani Hlatshwayo says he and his teammates are desperate to make up for their humiliation at the hands of Mauritania last September – the 3-1 loss derailing SA’s chances in the qualifers.
But Tyson says it will be all about the jersey and the nation.
The tough-tackling Wits says: “It’s about pride for the country, and as the caoch has been saying there are no friendly games when you play for South Africa.
“We will make sure we play to the best of our abilities to win the match because to be called up to the national team is an honour.
“We’ll play as though when we win, we’ll qualify for the tournament.”