BY FORTUNE MBELE
WARRIORS head coach Norman Mapeza has decided to give Dynamos teenager Bill Antonio an opportunity to showcase his talent as the senior national team takes on South Africa’s Bafana Bafana on Thursday.
Antonio comes in as replacement to the elusive Macaulay Bonne, who is based in England.
The Prince Edward High School student was part of the Dynamos’ squad that saw off Yadah 1-0 in their first Castle Lager Premier Soccer League game at the National Sports Stadium on Sunday.
For the umpteenth time, Zifa has tried to bring in the Ipswich Town striker Bonne without success as Mapeza once again called him for the Group G Fifa World Cup tie against Bafana Bafana at FNB Stadium on Thursday, but he snubbed the call.
“Dynamos FC’s teenage forward Bill Antonio has been incorporated into the Warriors squad to play World Cup qualifiers away to South Africa (November 11) and at home versus Ethiopia on November 14. Meanwhile, Macauley Bonne is out,” Zifa said in a statement.
Warriors manager Wellington Mupandare said they would not be calling up Bonne again in future as “… clearly there is no interest on his part”.
Antonio fights for position upfront with Knox Mutizwa and David Moyo.
There is also hope that Leicester striker Tawanda Maswanhise will be able to travel for the game against Ethiopia on Sunday, but will not be available for the Bafana Bafana game.
Mapeza is using the two games to fine-tune his squad for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations finals to be hosted by Cameroon in January and February next year.
“Tawanda Maswanhise is still hopeful of making the squad for the home game, but he is out of the South Africa game,” Zifa said. Mapeza has also given a chance to goalkeepers Taimon Mvula of Dynamos, Chicken Inn’s Donovan Bernard and Petros Mhari of FC Platinum.
The Warriors are out of the World Cup after losing to Ethiopia (away), Ghana home and away and being held by South Africa at the National Sports Stadium. The Warriors left for South Africa yesterday.
Goalkeepers: Taimon Mvula (Dynamos), Donavan Bernard (Chicken Inn), Petros Mhari (FC Platinum)
Defenders: Brendan Galloway (Plymouth Argyle), Tendayi Darikwa (Wigan Athletic), Bruce Kangwa (Azam), Divine Lunga (Mamelodi Sundowns), Takudzwa Chimwemwe (Nkana), Alec Mudimu (Torpedo Kutaisi), Peter Muduhwa (Highlanders), Godknows Murwira (Dynamos)
Midfielders: Marvelous Nakamba (Aston Villa), Kelvin Madzongwe (FC Platinum), Gerald Takwara (Venda Football Academy), Farai Madhananga (Marumo Gallants), Blessing Sarupinda (Sekhukhune), Tawanda Maswanhise (Leicester), Thabani Kamusoko (Zesco United), Jonah Fabisch (Hamburger SV), Kudakwashe Mahachi (SuperSport United), Khama Billiat (Kaizer Chiefs), Ismael Wadi (JDR Stars)
Strikers: David Moyo (Hamilton Academical), Knox Mutizwa (Lamontville Golden Arrows), B Antonio (Dynamos)
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