Rivaldo Coetzee has returned to Ajax Cape Town after failing a medical at Celtic. Photo: Chris Ricco, BackpagePix

Most local-based players reported to Bafana Bafana camp on Sunday as the senior national team gears up for crucial back-to-back Fifa World Cup qualifiers against Cape Verde.

South Africa play the islanders on Friday, September 1 in Cape Verde (8.30pm SA time kickoff) before welcoming the same opponents at Moses Mabhida on Tuesday, September 5 at 7pm.

Defender Rivaldo Coetzee has been ruled out of the two matches because of an injury, while all overseas players will join the rest of the team in Cape Verde.

Coach Stuart Baxter said it made a lot of sense for European-based players to fly straight to Cape Verde as it was shorter to fly there from Europe than coming to South Africa first, and then flying several hours to the Atlantic Ocean island again.

“Having discussed it with manager Barney Kujane, we found it that it made a lot of sense to ask European-based players to fly straight to Cape Verde instead of coming here and then embark on another long journey to the island.”

Those that will meet the rest of the team in Cape Verde are Keagan Dolly, who plays for Montpellier in France, Andile Jali (KV Oostende FC in Belgium), Kamohelo Mokotjo (Brentford, England), Bongani Zungu (Vitoria Guimares, Portugal), Thulani Serero (SBV Vitesse, Holland), Tokelo Rantie (Genclerbirligi, Turkey) and Kermit Erasmus, who plays for Rennes in France.

Safa Media