By Syvester Chishimba
UNDER-20 national team assistant coach Charles Bwale has dropped 20 players ahead of the 2019 Niger Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
The players were dropped after a one-week assessment.
Team manager Goodson Mboozi, who released the list in Lusaka yesterday, said 34 players have remained in camp from the 54 that were initially summoned.
“We have selected a crop of good players, the team is injury-free and I am positive the team will adequately prepare for the continental championship,” Mboozi said.
Assistant coach Charles Bwale and his bench have been working with 53 players in the last five days but have scaled down the numbers as they intensify preparations for their match that will see Zambia take on either Rwanda or Kenya, on the weekend of May 11-13 with the return leg a week later.
Bwale has kept faith in some of the star performers at the 2017 Cosafa U17 tournament that Zambia won in Mauritius.
Among the notables are Lameck Banda, Martin Njobvu, Muma Mumba, Prince Mumba, Andrew Phiri, Kingsley Hakwiya and Victor Kasokola.
There are some lads that have been thrown in the fray from the 2017 Cosafa U20 tournament among them Francesco Mwepu, Chanda Mukuka, Benson Kolala and Musonda Kalale.
Competition in the team has been stiffened with more players given a chance to earn places in the squad before the final team is picked.
The African champions will know their opponents over the weekend when Rwanda host Kenya in the second leg in Kigali after having drawn 1-all in the first leg.
Zambia’s first match will be away either to Rwanda or Kenya on the weekend of May 11-13 while the second leg will be in Lusaka on May 18, 19, 20.
One more round will be played after the second round where should Zambia overcome their opponents (Rwanda or Kenya) they will take on either Sudan or Ethiopia.
The team will not break camp until the time they play their match next month.
FULL PROVISIONAL SQUAD
Prince Bwalya, Bradley Mweene, Benson Mwale, Kevin Banda
Andrew Phiri (Morning Phiri), Victor Kasokola (Konkola Blades), Christopher Katongo (Kasama United), Kingsley Hakwiya (Dream Factory), Kasonde Mulenga (National Assembly), Jonathan Kapelembe (Romeki), Peter Chileshe (Bauleni), Justine Mwanza (Young Nkana), Anshel Siame (Forest Rangers), Posirio Kapapa (Kabwe Youth Academy), Benson Kolala (Nchanga Rangers)
Clinton Lubula (Kabwata Dynamos), Prince Mumba (Kabwe Warriors), Muma Mumba (Mamba Energy), Chanda Mukuka (Gomes), Harry Milanzi (Young Buffaloes), Musonda Kalale (Chambishi), Kunda Nkandu, Manaseh Soko (Forest Rangers), Thomas Zulu (Chongwe United), Albert Kangwanda (Young Arrows), Christopher Phiri (Morning Stars), Jonathan Tembo (Gomes)
Martin Njobvu (Nchanga Rangers), Paul Mwachisemu (Kafue Celtic), Godwin Chipanama (National Assembly), Emmanuel Kalala (Kitwe United), Lameck Banda (Zesco United), Francesco Mwepu (Chambishi), James Chilimina (Chirundu United)