Khune snubbed for Olympic spot

Olympics

Thembinkosi Lorch, Percy Tau and Themba Zwane are amongst 20 overage stars shortlisted for the South Africa squad set to take part at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The South African Football Association (SAFA) have confirmed the preliminary list of 62 local-based players and 16 overseas who are in contention to represent the country in Japan between July and August.

Scroll through the gallery above to see some of the overage PSL stars shortlisted for the Olympic squad

A large bulk of the squad that led David Notoane's side to qualification at the U-23 Africa Cup of Nations squad has been retained while 20 overage players have been included within the list submitted to FIFA and the International Olympic Committee.

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With Notoane able to select three overage players for his final 18-man squad, his next list to submitted on 1 July promises a healthy selection headache.

Lorch and Zwane are joined by Bafana Bafana captain Thulani Hlatswayo, Innocent Maela and Ronwen Williams amongst the high-profile inclusions, while Kaizer Chiefs star Itumeleng Khune has been snubbed.

The former Bafana captain's selection was the subject of heated debate four years ago when he took part at the 2016 Rio Olympics ahead of regular goalkeeper Jody February.

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"We have a lot of hard work ahead of us to ensure that we take only the best to represent South Africa at this big stage," Notoane told the SAFA official website.

"This is just a preliminary group of players that we think will be considered for the tournament, and as you can see it includes youngsters and seniors.

"We are confident that the group we will choose will do the business for the country, but for now we are monitoring all of them to see if they can make the final squad."

A total of 22 players will be registered for the global showpiece, with four on standby who will also travel with the rest of the squad to Japan.

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Full 62-man local shortlist:

Goalkeepers:

Mondli Mpoto (Bloem Celtic); Darren Johnson (Ajax), Andile Mbanjwa (Richards Bay), Sifiso Mlungwana (Golden Arrows), Ronwen Williams (SuperSport), Ricardo Goss (Bidvest Wits), Jody February (Cape Umoya).

Defenders:

Keanu Cupido (Cape Town City); Siyabonga Ngezana (Kaizer Chiefs), Tercious Malepe (Chippa Utd), Sandile Mthethwa (Chippa Utd), Njabulo Blom (Kaizer Chiefs), Reeve Frosler (Kaizer Chiefs), Given Msimango (Highlands Park), James Monyane (Orlando Pirates), Bongani Sam (Orlando Pirates), Katlego Mohamme (Tuks), Thendo Mukumela (Ajax), Happy Mashiane (Kaizer Chiefs), Keagan Johannes (Ajax), Jerry Msane (Highlands Park), Innocent Maela (Orlando Pirates), Thulani Hlatshwayo (Bidvest Wits), Motjeka Madisha (Sundowns), Mosa Lebusa (Sundowns), Sibusiso Mabiliso (Amazulu), Rivaldo Coetzee (Sundowns), Taariq Fielies (Cape Town City), Rushin De Reuck (Maritzburg Utd), Luke Fleurs (SuperSport).

Midfielders:

Teboho Mokoena (SuperSport); Athenkosi Dlala (Tuks), Sipho Mbule (SuperSport), Kamohelo Mahlatsi (SuperSport), Grant Margeman (Ajax), Jamie Webber (SuperSport), Siphesihle Maduna (Amazulu), Siphesihle Ngcobo (Kaizer Chiefs), Sphelele Mkhulise (Sundowns), Thembinkosi Lorch (Orlando Pirates), Vincent Pule (Orlando Pirates), Goodman Mosele (Baroka), Kgaogelo Sekota (Bidvest Wits), Aubrey Modiba (SuperSport), Themba Zwane (Sundowns), Siphesihle Mkhize (Ajax), Luvuyo Phewa (Real Kings).

Forwards:

Jemondre Dickens (TS Sporting); Itumeleng Shopane (Swallows FC), Phakamani Mahlambi (Sundowns), Bongani Hlongwane (Maritzburg Utd), Promise Mkhuma (Sundowns), Rowan Human (Bidvest Wits), Oswin Appolis (SuperSport), Gift Motupa (Bidvest Wits), Keletso Makgalwa (Sundowns), Judas Moseamedi (Maritzburg Utd), Bonginkosi Ntuli (Amazulu).

Full 16-man overseas-based shortlist:

Goalkeepers:

Darren Keet (OH Leuven).

Defenders:

Kabelo Serbia (Unattached), Nikola Tavares (Crystal Palace, England), Keanin Ayer (Varberg BoIS, Sweden).

Midfielders:

Thabo Cele (Cova da Piedade, Portugal), Khanya Leshabela (Leicester City, England), Kgaolo Chauke (Southampton, England), Kgosto Masangane (FS Metta, Latvia), Tashreeq Matthews (Varberg BoIS, Sweden), Bongani Zungu (Amiens, France).

Forwards:

Luther Singh (Moreirense, Portugal), Lyle Foster (Cercle Brugge, Belgium), Liam Jordan (HB Koge, Denmark), Kobamelo Kodisang (Braga B, Portugal), Percy Tau (Club Brugge, Belgium), Lebo Mothiba (RC Strasbourg, France).

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