South African U20 caretaker coach Helman Mkhalele says credit should go to his players for bouncing back after the draw with Madagascar to convincingly beating Lesotho 4-0 and advance to the COSAFA U20 Championship semi-finals in Lusaka, Zambia.

Eastern Cape born striker Sinenjongo Mkiva scored his third goal in as many matches in this tournament and is now the leading goal scorer.

The Kaizer Chiefs duo of Rahim Milazi and Keletso Sifama were also on target as well as captain Lancaster Human. Amajita finished on top of Group B with seven points and will meet Madagascar again after they finished as the second-best runner-up. Mkhalele says they now stand a chance of defending their trophy.

Amajita came to this game without a key player like Oswin Appolis, who had scored a brace in the opening game and got the man of the match award. He will be available in the semis and Mkhalele was happy to see his replacement showing his quality.

After they were held to a goalless draw by Madagascar in the group stages, they will meet them again in the semi-finals and Mkhalele expects the players to rectify their mistakes in this second game against the islanders.

The former Bafana Bafana international was an assistant to former Amajita head coach Thabo Senong when they lifted the past two regional titles and also went to two FIFA U20 World Cups.

With the second semi-final featuring hosts Zambia and Angola, Mkhalele says the islanders are facing them at the wrong time when his boys have started to pick up offensively.Report by Velile Mnyandu