Swedish based midfielder Abdul Lumala was as surprised as the nation when he was summoned to be part of the Cranes team currently camped in Abu Dhabi in preparation for the 2019 Total Africa Cup of Nations.
The Syrianska FC midfielder is one of the first timers with the national team alongside striker Alexis Bakka who plays for Carlstad United also in Sweden and he can’t hide it.
“It’s an opportunity for me to be here with some the best players and with the best goalkeeper in Africa, Denis Onyango, there is no debate about that,” Lumala said on Thursday.
“In camp, I have not faced any challenges because everyone welcomed me with open arms and I already new some of the players. But everyone is welcoming, the training sessions and facilities are top notch.”
“There is some special in the group, everyone is trying to give the best, everyone is pushing the other, we are one big family doing so many things together,” he added.
Lumala will be hoping that the two friendly games against Turkmenistan on June 9th and the other against Ivory Coast on June 15th will be enough to impress the coaches and probably have him in the final 23 that will be heading to Egypt.
Uganda is placed in Group A alongside host Egypt, DR Congo and Zimbabwe, they open their campaign against DR Congo on June 22nd.
The Squad in Abu Dhabi
Goalkeepers: Denis Onyango (Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa), Jamal Salim (Al Hilal-Sudan), Robert Odongkara ( Adama City – Ethiopia)
Defenders: Murushid Jjuuko (Simba, Tanzania), Bevis Mugabi (Yeovil Town, England), Isaac Muleme (FK Viktoria Zizkov, Czech Republic), Hassan Wasswa Mawanda, Joseph Ochaya (TP Mazembe, DR Congo), Timothy Denis Awanyi (KCCA FC, Uganda), Godfrey Walsumbi
Midfielders: William Kizito Luwagga (Shakhter Karagandy, Kazahstan), Khalid Aucho (Church Hill Brothers, India), Faruku Miya (HNK Gorica, Croatia), Tadeo Lwanga (Vipers SC-Uganda), Kirizestom Ntambi- Coffee FC, Ethiopia), Allan Kateregga (Maritzburg, South Africa), Lumala Abdul (Syrianska FC, Sweden), Moses Waiswa Moses (Vipers SC, Uganda), Sadam Juma (KCCA FC-Uganda)
Strikers: Alexis Bbakka (Carlstad United, Sweden), Patrick Henry Kaddu (KCCA FC, Uganda), Derrick Nsibambi (Smouha, Egypt), Allan Kyambadde (KCCA FC Uganda), Emmanuel Okwi (Simba SC – Tanzania)