Botswana’s senior national team, the Zebras, will leave today (Wednesday) for Lome, Togo, for their qualification match for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Coach Stanley Tshosane has picked almost the same team that has been doing well in past matches with the exception of Pontsho Moloi and Moemedi Moatlhaping.
Both players travelled for trials at Platinum Stars in Rustenburg and one of them is likely to sign while the other might also sign in the next transfer window, if he impresses.
Tshosane included three players who rarely make it in official matches. The three players are Lemponye Tshireletso of BDF XI, Sekhana Koko and Edwin Olerile of Township Rollers.
Zebras assistant coach, Kenneth Mogae, told Telegraph Sports that the three players were included because they impressed in the past friendly matches.
“If you look back, you will realise that most players impress when called for national team duty.
These three players were not an exception and we saw it fit to include them and, hopefully, they will keep on doing well,” he said. Mogae also added that they are taking the match seriously because it means a lot to the future of Zebras.
“We have already qualified for 2012 AFCON and this match does not mean much as far as qualification is concerned. But this does not mean we have to sit on our laurels and play for formalities. We want positive results because this also helps as far as FIFA rankings are concerned. If we improve on rankings it can help us to avoid big African giants when draw is conducted,” he said.
Mogae also said even if Togo does not bring their full strength squad, most of their players are based in Europe, especially France.
Botswana on the other hand go to the match while already preparing for AFCON.
The team went to a high performance centre in Pretoria before the league started and played a friendly match against Kenya.
Also on Tuesday, Botswana played a friendly match against Lesotho.
Full Zebras squad
Mompati Thuma, Tshireletso, Patrick Motsepe (BDF XI), Othusitse Pilane, Joel Mogorosi, Tshepo Motlhabankwe (Mochudi Centre Chiefs), Noah Maposa, Ofentse Nato, Mmusa Ohilwe (Gaborone United), Ndiyapo Letsholathebe (Police XI), Olerile, Onalethata Tshekiso, Koko (Township Rollers), Phenyo Mongala (Bloemfontein Celtic), Modiri Marumo (Bay United), Boitumelo Mafoko, Jerome Ramatlhakwane (Cape Town Santos), Diphetogo Selolwane, Mogogi Gabonamong (Supersport United)