Ghana hope Mensah gamble is stroke of genius

ACCRA - Ghana have gambled on the fitness of Sunderland defender John Mensah and included the centre-back in their final 23-man squad for the World Cup.

Coach Milovan Rajevac has named Mesnah for the tournament starting on June 11 in South Africa despite a run of injuries over the last year and concern over a ligament strain suffered towards the end of the English league season.

Ghana, who suffered a major blow last week when Michel Essien was ruled out of the finals because of injury, also included Portsmouth's German-born midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng in the squad named on Monday.

Boateng recently received FIFA permission to switch his nationality after previously winning caps at under-21 level for Germany, and is expected to debut for the Black Stars in a friendly against the Netherlands in Rotterdam on Tuesday.

The only other uncapped player in the squad is reserve goalkeeper Stephen Ahorlu.

Rajevac cut six players from his preliminary squad; Stephen Adams, Eric Addo, Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu, Laryea Kingston, Haminu Dramani and Bernard Kumordzi.

Ghana are in Group D along with Serbia, Australia and Germany.

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