By Swalley Kenyi
Africa Nations Championship
Zimbabwe 0 Morocco 0
Uganda 2 Burkina Faso 1
YUNUS Sentamu scored in each half as the Uganda Cranes picked their first ever win in the Africa Nations Championships with a 2-1 win over Burkina Faso at the Athlone Stadium in Cape Town, South Africa on Sunday.
Sentamu capitalised on the Burkinabe defensive blunder to pounce on the ball in front of the box and shaking off the attentions of the defender before leaving the goalkeeper Mohamed Kabore on the turf. He slotted into an empty net with unerring confidence.
Team captain Denis Iguma should have doubled the lead just before the break but fluffed his lines when he kicked the ball straight into goalkeeper Kabore’s hands. Iguma was guilty of another miss in the 78th minute.
As it appeared to be a largely one sided match in the last quarter of the match, Ssentamu doubled the lead with a brilliant finish thanks to substitute Francis Olaki’s perfect cross from the right. Olaki had come on for Vincent Kayizzi.
Olaki could have killed the game off with another goal but he failed to connect with Ssentamu’s pass late in the game.
The Burkinabe made more attempts at goal compared to the Cranes but Uganda managed more shots on target.
Substitute Cyrille Bayala scored a late consolation for Burkina Faso from a corner kick when he clipped in with two minutes left on the clock.
Until then, the closest they had come to scoring was when strikers Abubakar Toure and Issoufou Dayo both missed scoring opportunities from close range.
Cranes now lead Group B after Morocco and Zimbabwe settled for a goalless draw earlier in the day.
Cranes defender Savio Kabugo was stretchered off in the final minute of the match with cramp.
The Cranes return to action against Zimbabwe on Thursday January 16.
Benjamin Ochan 8, Julius Ntambi 7, Isaac Muleme 7, Richard Kasaga 7, Savio Kabugo 8 (Martin Mpuuga N/A), Denis Iguma 5, Hassan Waswa 5, Ivan Ntege 8, Vincent Kayizi 5, Francis Olaki 7, Brian Majwega 7, Yunus Sentamu 9
Uganda Cranes 2 Burkina Faso 1