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Bafana Bafana: Goalie to Put Mask Against Senegal

Johannesburg - Stuart Baxter can now focus on football and a winning strategy, as some of the biggest problems he has encountered at Bafana...

Johannesburg - Stuart Baxter can now focus on football and a winning strategy, as some of the biggest problems he has encountered at Bafana Bafana are solved. The week has been dominated by disappointments and frustrations for Baxter. 

But he has at last received some good news: Itumeleng Khune has been cleared to play against Senegal in their 2018 World Cup qualifier at Peter Mokaba Stadium tomorrow (7pm).

This comes after SA’s No 1 keeper saw two specialists yesterday.

Khune had his first full training session yesterday but was unable to finish it due to the shoulder injury that continues to bother him from time to time. But there is no need to panic, the Kaizer Chiefs shot-stopper will be in goal against Senegal.

He will play with a protective face mask to safeguard the fractured bone in his face. The mask is expected today after the measurements were taken yesterday.
Bafana Number One

Baxter flashed smile for a change yesterday. He got a welcome boost from Khune’s miraculous recovery along with news that Bongani Zungu will play in the away match against Senegal.

Furthermore, Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Tiyani Mabunda has arrived as replacement for Hlompho Kekana.

Baxter can now start planning for the Lions of Teranga in earnest and field a competitive team capable of delivering the crucial three points tomorrow.

Said the coach: “There are three things from yesterday that you will be interested in. Itu arrived yesterday morning and did some co-ordination work to test his vision. He will be getting his mask and then he will be tested by diving to check that his vision is not impaired. And Mabunda is here to replace Hlompho.”

Bafana will play an XI v XI training match and work on set-pieces today as players continue putting in hard work.

Baxter added: “The players are working hard, everyone is concentrating on the big game. Players are happier and no longer seem so nervous. Khune has had a chronic shoulder problem the whole season, it’s nothing new. The main issue is his face.”

Andile Jali injured his ankle but Baxter insists it’s nothing serious.

Centre-back Morgan Gould said Bafana would not be intimidated by the Senegalese: “We are serious about going to the World Cup. We’re not playing minnows. We need to go in with a good mindset and do it for our country.” - Daily Sun

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