Lorch, Hlatshwayo and Zwane headline South Africa's preliminary Olympic squad

The retired striker is allowed to select up to three overage players in his final squad of 22

South African Olympic squad head coach David Notoane has announced a squad of 78 provisional players to take part in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games to be held from 24 July-9 August 2020.

The squad, already sent to SASCOC, is made up of 62 local players and 16 who are playing abroad.

For the preliminary group, Notoane has selected 8 goalkeepers, 27 defenders, 24 midfielders and 19 strikers.

Notoane can select up to three overage players in his final squad of 22: 18 registered players and 4 on standby, who will also travel with the group.

The final list should be with Fifa, who are running football at the Olympics, on 1 July 2020.

“We have a lot of hard work ahead of us to ensure that we take only the best to represent South Africa at this big stage. This is just a preliminary group of players that we think will be considered for the tournament, and as you can see it includes youngsters and seniors,” said Notoane.

“The next few weeks will be very crucial as we will be running the rule over the players we believe will be best suited for this competition – it is a lovely headache to have because all the players on the list are good quality but unfortunately we can’t take all of them. We are confident that the group we will choose will do the business for the country, but for now we are monitoring all of them to see if they can make the final squad.”

The selected players in the provisional squad include the likes of Bafana Bafana goalkeepers Ronwen Williams, Ricardo Goss and Darren Keet; defenders, captain Thulani Hlatshwayo, Innocent Maela, Mosa Lebusa, Motjeka Madisha; midfielders Thembinkosi Lorch, Vincent Pule, Themba Zwane, Bongani Zungu and Aubrey Modiba, as well as forwards Percy Tau, Lebo Mothiba and Gift Motupa.

Youngsters also getting a look in include U20 internationals Rowan Hendricks and Oswin Appolis.

This will be South Africa’s third appearance at the Olympic Games – they were there in 2000 in Sydney, Australia under Shakes Mashaba, and in Rio, Brazil in 2016 with Owen Da Gama.

South Africa will be joined by Egypt and Ivory Coast as the three representatives of the African continent.

The draw for the Olympics will be held in Japan in April.

Goalkeepers

Mondli Mpoto (Bloemfontein Celtic), Darren Johnson (Ajax), Andile Mbanjwa (Richards Bay), Sifiso Mlungwana (Golden Arrows), Ronwen Williams (SuperSport United), Ricardo Goss (Bidvest Wits), Jody February (Cape Umoya), Darren Keet (OH Leuven, Belgium)

Defenders

Keanu Cupido (Cape Town City), Siyabonga Ngezana (Kaizer Chiefs), Tercious Malepe (Chippa Utd), Sandile Mthethwa (Chippa Utd), Njabulo Blom (Kaizer Chiefs), Reeve Frosler (Kaizer Chiefs), Given Msimango (Highlands Park), Thabiso Monyane (Orlando Pirates), Bongani Sam (Orlando Pirates), Katlego Mohamme (Tuks), Thendo Mukumela (Ajax), Happy Mashiane (Kaizer Chiefs), Keagan Johannes (Ajax), Jerry Msane (Highlands Park), Innocent Maela (Orlando Pirates), Thulani Hlatshwayo (Bidvest Wits), Motjeka Madisha (Sundowns), Mosa Lebusa (Sundowns), Sibusiso Mabiliso (AmaZulu), Rivaldo Coetzee (Sundowns), Taariq Fielies (Cape Town City), Rushin De Reuck (Maritzburg Utd), Luke Fleurs (SuperSport)

Midfielders

Teboho Mokoena (SuperSport), Athenkosi Dlala (Tuks), Sipho Mbule (SuperSport), Kamohelo Mahlatsi (SuperSport), Grant Margeman (Ajax), Jamie Webber (SuperSport), Siphesihle Maduna (AmaZulu), Siphesihle Ngcobo (Kaizer Chiefs), Sphelele Mkhulise (Sundowns), Thembinkosi Lorch (Orlando Pirates), Vincent Pule (Orlando Pirates), Goodman Mosele (Baroka), Kgaogelo Sekota (Bidvest Wits), Aubrey Modiba (SuperSport), Themba Zwane (Sundowns), Siphesihle Mkhize (Ajax), Luvuyo Phewa (Real Kings).'

Strikers

Jemondre Dickens (TS Sporting), Itumeleng Shopane (Swallows FC), Phakamani Mahlambi (Sundowns), Bongani Hlongwane (Maritzburg Utd), Promise Mkhuma (Sundowns), Rowan Human (Bidvest Wits), Oswin Appolis (SuperSport), Gift Motupa (Bidvest Wits), Keletso Makgalwa (Sundowns), Judas Moseamedi (Maritzburg Utd), Bonginkosi Ntuli (AmaZulu).