Khune and Matlaba named in Bafana squad after lengthy absence

Khune and Matlaba named in Bafana squad after lengthy absence

- Bafana Bafana coach Molefi Ntseki named his 25-man squad for the AFCON qualifiers against Sao Tome and Principe

- Itumeleng Khune and Thabo Matlaba are some of the surprise inclusions in the squad

- Bafana will host Sao Tome in their home leg at FNB Stadium on March 27 or 28

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Bafana Bafana are gearing up for battle in preparation for their 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifiers against Sao Tome and Principe.

Coach Molefi Ntseki named his 25-man squad and it featured some notable surprises.

Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune and Black Leopards defender Thabo Matlaba have been included by the Bafana mentor.

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Although Khune's quality has never been questioned, the shot-stopper currently cannot make the starting line-up at Naturena.

Khune has been named in place of Darren Keet and this follows a 16-month absence.

Sao Tome will travel to South Africa and play at the FNB Stadium on March 27 or 28, with the return fixture set for four days later.

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The full squad is listed below:

Goakeepers: Itumeleng Khune (Kaizer Chiefs), Ronwen Williams (SuperSport United), Brandon Petersen (Bidvest Wits)

Defenders: Erick Mathoho, Reeve Frosler (Kaizer Chiefs), Buhle Mkhwanazi, Thulani Hlatshwayo, Sifiso Hlanti (Bidvest Wits), Gladwyn Shitolo (Golden Arrows), Innocent Maela (Orlando Pirates), Mosa Lebusa (Sundowns), Thabo Matlaba (Black Leopards)

Midfielders: Andile Jali, Themba Zwane (Mamelodi Sundowns), George Maluleka, Lebogang Manyama (Kaizer Chiefs), Dean Furman, Teboho Mokoena (SuperSport United), Lebogang Phiri (Guigamp), Thembinkosi Lorch (Pirates), Percy Tau (Club Brugge), Thulani Serero (Al Jazira)

Strikers: Lebo Mothiba (Strasbourg), Bradley Grobler (SuperSport United), Thabiso Kutumela (Maritzburg United)

Previously, reported that Khune showed his class when he lavished praise on teammate Daniel Akpeyi.

The Nigerian goalkeeper has kept Khune out of the starting lineup but that hasn't dampened his spirits.

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