The national Amajita men’s team play two friendly international matches in a three-nation tournament in England – against the hosts and Brazil in the next week.
This will be South Africa’s first action since they competed at the 2017 FIFA U20 World Cup in Korea in May.
The Burger-King sponsored Amajita open their account with a clash against Brazil in Burton-Upon-Trent on Wednesday. Kick-off is at 8pm SA time.
The next fixture sees the hosts taking on Brazil on Friday in Shrewsbury (another 8pm kick-off time).
South Africa’s second and final match of the tournament will be against England on Monday in Leek, Macclesfield Road with kick-off once again 8pm SA time
Amajita stand-in head coach Helman Mkhalele has selected 20 players to participate in the tournament and he’ll be assisted by David Notoane.
The squad includes some of the players who were part of the U17 national team, and some who have featured for the U20 national team.
Defender Malebogo Modise is the only player in the group who was at the 2017 FIFA U20 World Cup in Korea – he’s also the only player to have been capped at Bafana Bafana level.
‘This is a very important tournament for these boys because it will give some of them international experience. There is no better way of improving a player than having them play at this level so that by the time they get to Bafana Bafana, they have an idea of what happens at international level,’ said Mkhalele, a former Bafana Bafana winger who was part of the 1996 AFCON winning squad.
‘When we got the invitation we did not hesitate because competition at junior level is key to development. If you look at the squad you will see that some have played at U17 level and others at U20, and we also have those who will be playing international football for the first time – this is a great opportunity for them and I hope they seize the moment.’
Striker Tyrique Bartlett, son of Bafana Bafana legend Shaun Bartlett, is the only overseas-based player in the squad, and met up with his compatriots in London.
He is on the books of Newcastle United Academy.
The South Africans return to the country on 6 September.
The SA U20 squad in England:
Goalkeepers: Phillip Lesoma (Tuks), Glen Baadjies (Mamelodi Sundowns)
Defenders: Malebogo Modise (Sundowns), Lesiane Mokgopedi (Sundowns), Keagan Allan (Bidvest Wits), Lethabo Mazibuko (Orlando Pirates), Dean Solomons (Ajax Cape Town), Brooklyn Poggenpoel (Old Mutual)
Midfielders: Siphesihle Mkhize (Sundowns), Tashreeq Matthews (Ajax Cape Town), Swelihle Mthiyane (KZN Academy), Ngcebo Nala (KZN Academy), Duncan Adonis (Cape Town City), Luke le Roux (Stellenbosch FC), Banana Tshawe (Jomo Cosmos)
Strikers: Leo Thethani (Ajax Cape Town), Dylan Stoffels (AmaZulu), Sibusiso Shibane (KZN Academy), Lyle Foster (Orlando Pirates), Tyrique Bartlett (Newcastle United Academy, England)