SWEDEN-based striker Thomas Ulimwengu has withdrawn from the Taifa Stars for upcoming friendly matches against Botswana and Burundi due to injury.
Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) revealed yesterday that the striker who plays for AFC Eskilstuna, would not honour the upcoming fixtures at the National Stadium.
“Coach Mayanga has received information from Sweden saying that Ulimwengu is currently monitored by AFC Eskilstuna doctors after picking injury recently,” TFF Information Officer Alfred Lucas said yesterday.
Ulimwengu was among three overseas-based players, who were summoned in the initial 26-man squad for the strength-testing matches, others being Mbwana Samata and Farid Musa, who feature for Belgium’s KRC Genk and DC Tenerife of Spain respectively.
Mayanga’s side moved into residential camp yesterday ahead of the two friendly matches against Botswana on Saturday and Burundi next Tuesday.
But the team started the camp without Simba and Azam players, who were on club duties yesterday. Simba were up against Madini FC in the Azam Sports Federation Cup, while Azam were in Swaziland for a CAF Confederation Cup tie against Mbabane Swallows.
The two friendlies are meant to prepare the Stars for the African Nations Championship (CHAN, meant for home-based players) and Afhome-based players) and Afhome-based players) and Af rican Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifying matches.
Taifa Stars have been drawn against Rwanda in the second round of 2018 CHAN qualifiers for Central and East Geographical Zone in July.
The first leg is scheduled to be played between July 14 and 16 in Dar es Salaam with the return leg due to two weeks later in Kigali.
The winner between Tanzania and Rwanda will take on Uganda, which is favourite to go past the winner of the second round tie between Sudan and Somalia. In the AFCON qualifiers, Taifa Stars will compete in Group L alongside Uganda, Cape Verde and Lesotho.
Full squad: Goalkeepers; Aishi Manula (Azam), Deogratius Munishi (Young Africans) and Said Mohamed (Mtibwa Sugar). Defenders; Shomary Kapombe (Azam), Hassan Kessy (Yanga), Mohammed Hussein (Simba), Gardiel Michael (Azam), Andrew Vincent (Yanga), Salim Mbonde (Mtibwa Sugar), Banda (Simba) and Erasto Nyoni (Azam FC).
Midfielders; Himid Mao (Azam), Jonas Mkude (Simba), Salum Abubakar ‘Sure Boy’ (Azam), Said Ndemla (Simba), Frank Domayo (Azam), Muzamil Yassin (Simba), Simon Msuva (Yanga), Shiza Kichuya (Simba), Mussa (DC Tennerife) and Hassan Kabunda (Mwadui FC).
Strikers; Samatta (KRC Genk, Belgium), Ibrahim Hajib (Simba), Mbarak Yussuf (Kagera Sugar) and Abdulrahman Mussa (Ruvu Shooting). The technical bench includes assistant coach Patrick Mwangata, who is also goalkeeping coach, Danny Msangi (Manager), Ally Ruvu (Kit Manager), Richard Yomba (Doctor) and Gilbert Kigadya (Physician).