Kamohelo Mokotjo and Lebohang Maboe have paid the price for the defeat to the Ivory Coast after they were dropped to the bench for Bafana Bafana’s must-win Africa Cup of Nations clash with Namibia on Friday night.
Mokotjo and Maboe were unable to spark the South African attack against the Ivorians in the 1-0 defeat in Cairo on Monday, and coach Stuart Baxter has wielded the axe.
Bongani Zungu and Sibusiso Vilakazi have been brought in to spice up Bafana’s creativity against the Brave Warriors at the Al Salam Stadium (10pm SA time kickoff).
They will be joined by another new face in midfield, Mamelodi Sundowns captain Hlompho Kekana, who replaces the injured Dean Furman.
Kekana can certainly break up attacks from the opposition, but is probably better equipped to also push forward himself.
Baxter’s tinkering to the starting line-up didn’t end there. Ronwen Williams, who produced an excellent performance against the Ivory Coast, has made way for the taller Darren Keet.
Baxter had said earlier that Williams had impressed in training, so it is somewhat of a surprise to see Keet back between the sticks.
But the Wits goalkeeper was the first-choice throughout the qualifying campaign, and gets an opportunity to stamp his authority on the backline.
Bafana Bafana Team
Darren Keet, Thamsanqa Mkhize, Sfiso Hlanti, Thulani Hlatshwayo (captain), Buhle Mkhwanazi, Hlompho Kekana, Percy Tau, Themba Zwane, Lebo Mothiba, Bongani Zungu, Sibusiso Vilakazi.
Bafana Bafana starting 11 v Namibia.— Bafana Bafana (@BafanaBafana) June 28, 2019
Kick off: 10pm.
Starting 11: Darren Keet (G), Thamsanqa Mkhize, Sfiso Hlanti, Thulani Hlatshwayo (c), Buhle Mkhwanazi, Hlompho Kekana, Percy Tau, Themba Zwane, Lebo Mothiba, Bongani Zungu, Sbusiso Vilakazi. pic.twitter.com/lEMiNAPbn4
Substitutes: Bruce Bvuma, Ronwen Williams, Thembinkosi Lorch, Tiyani Mabunda, Kamohelo Mokotjo, Daniel Cardoso, Innocent Maela, Ramahlwe Mphahlele, Lebohang Maboe, Thulani Serero, Lars Veldwijk.