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Football | Bafana Bafana

Benni McCarthy © Backpagepix

McCarthy may be out of Afcon

Benni McCarthy’s chances of playing at the African Nations Cup were effectively ruled out by coach Gordon Igesund after the Bafana victory over Malawi in Durban on Saturday.

Igesund says he understands McCarthy has a hamstring twinge and that it is unlikely he will recover in time.

The coach said he will not be selecting any players who are carrying injuries when he names his 23-man squad, which he will announce on December 30.

“The risk is too high to take injured players. I need everyone that I take along. I have not spoken to the player but I have spoken to his coach, Roger de Sa, on several occasions.”

The 35-year-old McCarthy is expected to join up with a 32-man preliminary squad on Thursday for a three-day Bafana Bafana training camp where his fitness will be assessed.

“I’m sure he’ll be honest at camp and he’ll tell me how it feels. We’ll also be able to see whether he will make it or not.”

McCarthy hurt the hamstring making his return for Bafana Bafana against Brazil in September in his first international in more than two years.

He has since played fleetingly for Orlando Pirates after a three month lay off but broke down in training last week again, his club said.


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