The final Zambia Under-20 team set to be named on Friday will be tested by 2017 title chasers Zanaco and Green Buffaloes friendlies next week to see how battle-ready they are to defend the 2017 COSAFA U20 Cup at home.

Zambia are about to complete their second week of training camp ahead of hosting the COSAFA U20 from December 6-16 on the Copperbelt.

The team was trimmed from 45 last week to 25 this week and has already played three training games, winning two after initially losing to Zanaco in a closed door training match.

Assistant coach Charles Bwale said the team is showing great progress after beating Chilanga Youth Select 6-0 on November 21 and Lusaka Youth Select 3-0 on November 23.

“Next week we are likely to have two or three games against premier sides Zanaco and Green Buffaloes and we will be able to gauge them if they are fully ready for the tournament,” Bwale said.

“If you look at the first game against Zanaco, we were still trying to look at one or two players and I think most of the players had jitters playing Zanaco who are big guys in the league. But the phobia went when they played Chilanga and Lusaka U20 select and we saw some positives.”

And Numba left out three players from the third friendly against Lusaka Select so that they could take care of their respective league obligations.

Captain Lameck Njobvu was rested after playing in Nkwazi’s 3-0 away loss to Zanaco on Wednesday.

Nchanga Rangers striker Martin Njobvu and Kabwe Warriors midfielder Prince Mumba have been released to attend to their clubs’ crucial relegation survival battles this weekend.

And Zambia Under-20 coach Mumamba Numba is set to announce his final 23-member team on Friday during a press briefing at 09h00 at Cresta Golf View Hotel.

The defending champions are in Group A where they will face Uganda, Swaziland and Malawi.