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Zambia pick schoolboy for Warriors friendly

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LUSAKA — Zambia national football team coach Herve Renard has picked 16-year-old Godfrey Ngwenya from Kaonga High School into his 23-member squad to play Zimbabwe in an international friendly match set for August 8 at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.

Renard, who watched the player during the ongoing FAZ-Airtel Rising Stars tournament in Lusaka, has also called Zesco United striker Winston Kalengo and Zanaco playmaker Henry Banda for the match.

Ngwenya impressed the Frenchman when he turned out for Central Province helping his team reach the finals after beating Northern Province in the semi-finals yesterday.

Kalengo and Banda caught Renard’s eye during a week 16 MTN-FAZ Premier League match between Zanaco and Zesco at Sunset that saw Banda scoring a wonder free-kick in the bankers’ 2-1 win.

Those in the squad are Kalililo Kakonje, Joshua Titima, Racha Kola, with Jimmy Chisenga, Nyambe Mulenga, Steven Kabamba, Charles Siyingwa, Gift Sakuwaha, Michael Bwalya and Ngwenya.

Others are Thomas Nyirenda, Joseph Sitali, Bruce Musakanya, Banda, John Ching’andu, Lewis Macha, Mwepya Kasongo, Venecious Mapande, Jackson Mwanza, Evans Kangwa, Kalengo, Moses Phiri and Reynolds Kampamba.

Football Association of Zambia spokesperson Erick Mwanza, who released the list of players at Football House in Lusaka yesterday, said the players must report for camp on August 5 in Ndola in readiness for the match.

Mwanza said the match would help Renard continue with his programme of identifying more players to fuse into the Chipolopolo ahead of the South Korea friendly match on August 15 and the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations final round qualifier against Uganda.

Meanwhile, BBC reports that Zambia striker Jacob Mulenga says he feels “stronger” after absence from the Chipolopolo due to injury.

Mulenga’s face filled with a smile when he was asked how it feels to be fit again and back in form.

It is a huge contrast from his miserable demeanour last December when a knee injury ruled him out of the Africa Cup of Nations — a tournament that Zambia went on to win.

Now recovered, Mulenga is in pre-season training with his Dutch club Utrecht and has been called up to the Zambia team for a friendly in South Korea on August 15.

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