Seven players plying their trade in the Azam Rwanda Premier League are among a 25-man provisional squad summoned by Burundi to begin preparations for the upcoming Cecafa Challenge Cup slated for Nairobi, Kenya from December 3 to 17, 2017.
Burundi head coach Niyungeko Alain Olivier summoned the Rwandan-based players to beef up his side as he seeks to guide Intamba ku rugamba to their maiden regional title. Burundi has never won the Cecafa Cup since the tournament was incorporated in 1967.
The Rwandan-based players summoned include; Rayon Sport duo of Nahimana Shassir and Kwizera Pierre, Amagaju duo of Ndikumana Tresor and Shabani Hussein, Mukura VS pair of Nshimirimana David and Duhayindavyi Gaël and Moussa Omar who plays for Bugesera Fc.
Other Burundian players plying their trade in Rwanda but made it to Niyungeko’s list include Rayon Sports Fc and AS Kigali Fc strikers Caleb Bonfils and Ndarusanze Jean Claude respectively.
Other players summoned include South Africa’s based striker Abdoul Fiston, former Police Fc and AS Kigali striker Laudit Mavugo who now plays for Tanzanian giants Simba SC while the rest are players featuring in Burundi’s premier league.
Burundi drawn in Pool B alongside reigning champions Uganda, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Zimbabwe are slated to begin camp on Sunday in Bujumbura.
Meanwhile, hosts Kenya named their provisional squad on Wednesday, a day after they announced Belgian Paul Put as their new head coach. Kenyan Premier League champions Gor Mahia produced seven players as the Harambee Stars technical bench named a 25-man squad namely; goal keeper Boniface Oluoch, defenders Musa Mohammed, Harun Shakava and Wellington Ochieng, midfielders Ernest Wendo and Kenneth Muguna as well as striker George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo.
The team is set to report camp on Sunday ahead of their CECAFA crunch opener against the Amavubi Stars of Rwanda.
Kenya is drawn in a tough Pool A that also has the Kilimanjaro Stars of Tanzania, the Zanzibar Heroes and guest team the Mediterranean Knights of Libya.
The Harambee Stars will be under the tutelage of new head coach Belgian Paul Put, who is tasked to see Kenya reclaim the regional title they last lifted in 2013 when Allan Wanga’s brace sunk Sudan 2-0 at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Burundi Provisional squad:
Goalkeepers: Rukundo Onesme, Nahimana Jonathan, Mutombo Fabien
Defenders: Moussa Omar, Nshimirimana David, Ndoriyobija Eric, Harerimana Rachid Léon, Barisinze Nassor, Ndikumana Trésor, Mwenebantu John and Kamana Ismaël
Midfielders: Kwizera Pierre, Duhayindavyi Gaël, Urasenga Cedric Danny, Ndayishimiye Youssouf, Nahimana Shassir, Harerimana Moussa and Ndikumana Moussa.
Forwards: Abdoul Fiston, Moussa Mossi, Shabani Hussein, Shaka Bienvenue, Mavugo Laudit, Slim Said and Iddy Muselemu.
Kenya Provisional Squad:
Goalkeepers: Boniface, Oluoch (Gor Mahia), Gabriel Andika (AFC Leopards), Patrick Matasi (Posta Rangers).
Defenders: Musa Mohammed (Gor Mahia), Charles Momanyi (Kakamega Homeboyz), Dennis Shikhayi (AFC Leopards), Jockins Atudo (Posta Rangers), Harun Shakava (Gor Mahia), Wellington Ochieng (Gor Mahia), Benard Ochieng (Vihiga United), Omar Mbongi (Ulinzi Stars).
Midfielders: Ernest Wendo (Gor Mahia), Whyvonne Issuza (AFC Leopards), Kenneth Muguna (Gor Mahia), Patillah Omotto (Kariobangi Sharks), Duncan Otieno (AFC Leopards), Ovellah Ochieng (Kariobangi Sharks), Lawrence Juma (Nzoia Sugar).
Strikers: Samuel Onyango (Ulinzi Stars), Kepha Aswani (Nakumatt), George Odhiambo (Gor Mahia), Masoud Juma (Kariobangi Sharks), Vincent Oburu (AFC Leopards), Stephen Waruru (Ulinzi Stars), Benjamin Mosha (Sony Sugar).