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Six debutants in U23 squad to face Sudan

Sofapaka forward John Avire training with national football team harambee Stars during a session at the Kenya School of Monetary Studies on February 19, 2019. PHOTO/FKF

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 1 – Sofapaka forward John Avire and Nairobi Stima’s Curtis Wekesa lead the list as head coach Francis Kimanzi named six debutants in his provisional squad for the Under-23 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Sudan on March 22.

Others named in the team include Kakamega Homeboyz forward Peter Thiong’o, Boniface Onyango and Moses Mudavadi, who have been promoted from the U20 Rising Stars squad as well as Arnold Onyango, who captained the U17 team to fourth place at the CECAFA U17 championship.

The squad will also have three foreign based players in the squad led by skipper Joseph ‘Crouch’ Okumu who turns out for the Royal Monarchs in the USA, midfielder Alwyn tera who plays for Saburtalo in Georgia and winger Ovellah Ochieng who plays in the Swedish second tier with vassalund IF.

The team is set to kick off residential training on March 11 in Nairobi, ahead of the first leg, set to be played on March 20 at the Khartoum Stadium in Sudan.

The second leg will be played on March 24, 2019, at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani, with the winner set to face either of Nigeria or Libya in the third round.

The third round winner, on aggregate, will grace the 2019 Africa U23 Cup of Nations in Egypt, which will act as a qualifier to the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan.

Provisional Squad

Goalkeepers

Timothy Odhiambo (Ulinzi Stars), Brian Bwire (Kariobangi Sharks)

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Defenders

Mike Kibwage (KCB), Johnstone Omurwa (Mathare United), David Owino (Mathare United), Yusuf Mainge (AFC Leopards), Joseph Okumu (Real Monarchs, USA), Boniface Onyango (Kariobangi Sharks), Andrew Juma (Mathare United), Moses Mudavadi (Bandari)

Midfielders

Teddy Osok (Wazito), Tobias Otieno (Sony Sugar), Ibrahim Shambi (Ulinzi Stars), James Mazembe (Kariobangi Sharks), Alwyn Tera (FC Saburtalo, Georgia), Arnold Onyango (Mathare United), Peter Thiongo (Kakamega Homeboyz), Curtis Wekesa (Nairobi Stima), Sven Yidah (Kariobangi Sharks)

Forwards

Pistone Mutamba (Sofapaka), Boniface Mukhekhe (Mt Kenya United), Ovella Ochieng (Vasalund FC, Sweden), Sydney Lokale (Kariobangi Sharks), Jafari Owiti   (AFC Leopards), John Avire (Sofapaka).

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