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South Africa recalls midfielder May Mahlangu after vowing to never pick him again

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JOHANNESBURG — Midfielder May Mahlangu has been recalled to South Africa's squad for friendlies against Swaziland and Nigeria despite the federation vowing last year to never pick him again.

Mahlangu was dropped in November for missing a training camp, claiming he was tired. Then, the South African Football Association said Mahlangu would never be selected again.

But Mahlangu, who plays for Turkey's Konyaspor, and Ajax winger Thulani Serero were recalled by coach Ephraim Shakes on Tuesday. They both missed the recent African Cup of Nations.

Serero was contentiously left out of the African Cup squad by Mashaba despite many thinking he is South Africa's most creative player.

Goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune and Belgium-based midfielder Ayanda Patosi were also back in Mashaba's squad for the two friendlies at the end of the month.

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