21 May 2014

Below-strength South Africans heading to NZ

9:35 am on 21 May 2014

The South African football coach Gordon Igesund admits he'll have a below-strength side for their upcoming matches against Australia and New Zealand.

Igesund says of the original 18 players called up, 11 have withdrawn through injury and clubs not wanting to release them.

Bafana Bafana are due to play Australia in a friendly match in Sydney on Monday, which falls outside a FIFA-sanctioned date as the Socceroos fine tune their preparations for the World Cup.

Four days later, Bafana play the All Whites in Auckland.

Coach Igesund also says he hasn't heard back from all of the new players he's called up, with speculation that some players are already on holiday, possibly outside of South Africa.

The squad was originally scheduled to leave for Australia tonight, but will now leave tomorrow night as team management scramble to secure visas and officials documents for the late additional players to make the trip.