8 November 2017 – Bafana Bafana camp was buzzing on Wednesday as number one goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune went through his paces with the rest of the group.
South Africa takes on Senegal in a FIFA World Cup qualifier on Friday, 10 November 2017 at Peter Mokaba Stadium knowing they need to win the remaining two games to book a ticket to Russia 2018. The match kicks off at 19h00 and tickets are selling fast at R30 all round.
Although coach Stuart Baxter was cagey on whether Khune is certain to pass a fitness test, the influential goalkeeper was buoyant as usual insisting he was always prepared to die for his country.
First he went through his ritual of jogging around the pitch before the team’s physical trainer put him through a rigorous fitness exercise.
After that, he was put through the normal routine of stopping the balls where he looked sharp and not showing any effect of the facial fracture he suffered against Chippa United on Sunday. Khune’s freak injury has put the country into a panic mode but he was his vibrant self when he joined the rest of the camp on Wednesday morning.
His presence brought the self-assurance within the team and the technical staff looked bullish during Wednesday’s training sessions in which they worked more on the defensive and attacking set-ups.
Coach Baxter said he was happy that all the players were now in camp including late replacement, Tiyani Mabunda who came in for Thulani Serero.
Also joining the rest of the group in Polokwane was assistant coach Quinton Fortune who flew from Manchester, England on Monday.
Both Andile Jali and Bongani Zungu will miss Friday’s clash but will be available for next Tuesday’s return game in Dakar, Senegal.
South Africa leave for Senegal on Saturday the day after Friday’s clash in Polokwane where they play the Teranga Lions the following Tuesday.