Stuart Baxter has named what he feels is his strongest side for Bafana Bafana’s Africa Cup of Nations opener against Ivory Coast this afternoon at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo, Egypt.
As expected defender Thulani Hlatshwayo will captain the side as their prepare to make a good first impression in their first game in Group D, which is currently led by Morocco after managing to narrowly beat Namibia on Monday evening.
Bafana have not had an ideal preparation with only one friendly match against Ghana in Dubai a week or so before the tournament got under way last week Friday – but that hasn’t stopped Baxter from taking his men through their rigorous paces at the Aero Sport Complex here.
He has named the following starting line-up: Ronwen Williams, Thami Mkhize, Sifiso Hlanti, Thulani Hlatshwayo, Buhle Mkhwanazi, Dean Furman, Kamohelo Mokotjo, Themba Zwane, Lebo Maboe, Percy Tau and Lebo Mothiba.
These are the players who have made the bench: Darren Keet, Bruce Bvuma, Innocent Maela, Ramahlwe Mphahlele, Daniel Cardoso, Hlompho Kekana, Tiyani Mabunda, Bongani Zungu, Thulani Serero, Thembinkosi Lorch, Lars Veldwijk, Sbusiso Vilakazi.
Kick-off is at 4:30 pm.