By HENRY MORABANG
PAPUA New Guinea men’s soccer coach Flemming Serritslev has drafted six new players into the squad as they prepare for the second leg of the 2018 World Cup qualifiers next year.
PNG Kapuls will meet Tahiti in the first match on March 20 in Port Moresby.
Serritslev said the new players include Lae City Dwellers’ midfielder Troy Gunemba, his elder brother Raymond, Nigel Dabinyaba and Obert Bika.
Other new players are Giwi Simon, Kenneth Pailau John Ray and the Kepo brothers, Kolu and Ati, from Kalo village, Central.
He said he has included the new players to give them an opportunity to train with the squad and hopefully make it through.
The coach recommended two players from Kalo village after spotting them during the Hekari-sponsored Central Cup tournament this year.
“Both are biological brothers and are exciting prospects,” Serritslev said.
“I have included them to see how they can perform against top senior players, and hopefully, like everyone, will get a chance to play for the country in future.”
Serritslev expects a full team today when all overseas-based players fly in for the one-week camp.
All five players from Solomon Islands, including skipper David Muta, will arrive today from Honiara. The Solomon Islands-based players are skipper David Muta, forward Tommy Semmy, defenders Koriak Upaiga, Daniel Joe of Marist FC, and Michael Foster from Malaita Kingz FC.
All five are currently playing in the semi-professional Telekom S-League in the Solomon Islands. New Zealand-based Raymond Gunemba and Australia-based Nigel Dabinyaba arrived yesterday for the camp.
This is the first of two camps planned for the PNG Kapuls.
The second camp is in November, where the team will be finalised.
PNG Kapuls have already secured a friendly against Malaysia in November after their second camp. PNG have been pooled in Group B alongside heavyweights Solomon Islands and Tahiti.
The winner of this qualifier will take on South America’s fifth-placed team for a place in the 2018 Fifa World Cup, Russia.
By HENRY MORABANG