By Samuel Opio
Uganda’s national women football team, Crested Cranes, have Thursday afternoon been knocked out of the ongoing Confederation of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA) women championship in South Africa, after losing 2-0 to the hosts.
The East Africans who are playing at the tournament as a guest nation put up a surprise performance when they sailed into the semifinals beating some of the regional giants.
Goals from Linda Maserame Motlhalo and Jermaine Seoposenwe in either half were enough for Banyana Banyana to progress to the finals at the expense of the youthful Crested Cranes.
Motlhalo opened the scoring at Wolfson Stadium in Port Elizabeth inside seven minutes following early pressure from the tournament hosts. The young striker recieved a long ball over the top from Biyana Kholosa to slot home past Ruth Aturo.
Crested Cranes made efforts for an equalizer but could not put away the half chances they created against a largely experienced South African side.
Shamira Nalujja saw her effort from outside the area fly wide in the 11th minute. She also caught Alice Motroh in possession but opted to set up Lilian Mutuuzo rather than shoot at goal.
South Africa who controlled the game well went into the break with a slim lead.
After recess, Faridah Bulega who maintained the team that face Zimbabwe called for a double substitution a couple of minutes into the second half with Hasifa Nassuna and Juliet Nalukenge coming on for Shamirah Nalugya and Lillian Mutuuzo respectively.
South Africa doubled their lead in the 68th minute with Linda Motlhalo who easily beat Shadiah Nankya setting up Seoposenne who calmly finished past Aturo.
Uganda will now play for the third place against Zambia who lost to Cameroon 1-0 in the other semifinal. The game will be played on Saturday afternoon.