Cape Town – Bafana Bafana team coach Shakes Mashaba on Friday named several surprises in his squad for the next two Caf Africa Cup of Nations qualifying matches against Sudan and Nigeria.
South Africa face Sudan in Khartoum on September 5 before returning home to take on Nigeria at the Cape Town Stadium on September 10.
A squad of 25 has been assigned for the trip to Sudan, with a further nine players joining them for the match in the Mother City.
Among his list of uncapped players, Mashaba included Ajax Cape Town's untested central defender Ayabulela Magqwaka, who has played only a handful of matches in the premier league and has yet to feature for the Urban Warriors this season.
There was also a call-up for Chippa United's David Zulu, the top goal-scorer in the National First Division last season, but who has only three games to his credit in top-flight soccer.
There were also a couple of surprise omissions, including the overseas-based pair of Thulani Serero and May Mahlangu, who were both fit and available.
Mashaba instead decided to go for Ayanda Patosi, despite the FC Lokeren midfielder having undergone a knee operation a month ago.
Kaizer Chiefs duo Bernard Parker and Simphiwe Tshabalala were unavailable due to injury, while there was no call-up for the likes of Amakhosi marksman Katlego Mphela or Orlando Pirates front man Kermit Erasmus.
Mashaba also named his new technical team, including former Orlando Pirates and Platinum Stars coach Owen da Gama as his assistant.
South Africa squad: Goalkeepers: Itumeleng Khune, Senzo Meyiwa, Dumisani Msibi. Defenders: Anele Ngcongca, Ayabulela Magqwaka, Sibusiso Khumalo, Thulani Hlatshwayo, Buhlebuyeza Mkhwanazi, Erick Mathoho, Thabo Matlaba, Rivaldo Coetzee, Ramahlwe Mphahlele. Midfielders: Themba Zwane, Sibusiso Vilakazi, Oupa Manyisa, Andile Jali, Dean Furman, Ayanda Patosi, Mandla Masango, Keagan Dolly, Kamohelo Mokotjo. Strikers: Tokelo Rantie, Bongani Ndulula, Bonginkosi Ntuli, David Zulu.
Reserves: Darren Keet, Ronwen Williams, Ntsikelelo Nyauza, Bongani Zungu, Jabulani Shongwe, George Lebese, Percy Tau, Nhlakanipho Ntuli, Siyanda Ngubo.
Technical team: Shakes Mashaba (head coach), Owen Da Gama (first assistant coach), Thabo Senong (second assistant oach), Lucky Shiburi (goalkeeper coach). – Sapa