NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 7 – Three National Super League players have been included in a 25-man provisional squad called up to camp by First Coach Stanley Okumbi ahead of a friendly match against Malawi April 18 as the team starts its preparations for the 2018 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) to be staged in Kenya.
Vihiga United midfielder Chris Masinza and Palos FC striker Morven Otinya have all been handed maiden call ups while KCB forward Crispinus Onyango who has had previous stint with the team has also been included.
Others who have been handed their debuts are the Kariobangi Sharks duo of defenders Pascal Ogweno and Bolton Omwenga as well as Bandari FC’s newly signed left-back Siraj Mohammed formerly with FC Talanta.
Also making the team is Nzoia Sugar forward Masita Masuta and Bandari’s Darius Msagha who have both had previous call ups, but never made the final cut.
AFC Leopards front-man Mungai Kiongera earns a return to the national fold after a superb start to the season, though he is currently out with a slight knee injury.
Okumbi has also recalled Ulinzi Stars left-back Omar Mbongi, but he might not be available as he is out on a career progression course with the military for the next three months.
The team is tentatively set to report camp on Monday, but the national team officials are currently facing a challenge of having all the players in camp as the game falls out of the FIFA calendar.
Sources intimate to Capital Sport that there is currently a push and shove with the Kenyan Premier League officials who are adamant to postpone some games to accommodate the friendly.
KPL have lined up fixtures across the entire Easter weekend of April 14, 15, 16 and 17, just a day to the friendly match. Malawi on the other hand, has been in camp for close to a month.
Full Harambee Stars squad
Goal Keepers; Boniface Oluoch (Gor Mahia) Patrick Matasi (Posta Rangers)
Defenders; Simon Mbugua (Posta Rangers) Jockins Atudo (Posta Rangers) Robinson Kamura (AFC Leopards) Musa Mohammed (Gor Mahia) Pascal Ogweno (Kariobangi Sharks) Harun Shakava (Gor Mahia) Bolton Omwenga (Kariobangi Sharks) Siraj Mohammed (Bandari) Omar Mbongi (Ulinzi)
Midfielders; Duncan Otieno (AFC Leopards) Ernest Wendo (Gor Mahia) Joseph Kuria (Posta Rangers) Kenneth Muguna (Gor Mahia) Amos Asembeka (Sony Sugar) Chris Masinza (Vihiga United) Samuel Onyango (Ulinzi Stars) Noah Wafula (Tusker)
Strikers;Morven Otinya (Palos) Masita Masuta (Nzoia) Chrispinus Onyango (KCB) Darius Msagha (Bandari) Cavin Odongo (Kariobangi Sharks) Paul Kiongera (AFC Leopards).