By Frank Kamuntu
Uganda and Kenya on Tuesday booked their place in the semifinals of the ongoing CECAFA Senior Women’s Challenge Cup in group B matches, held at the Azam Complex in Chamazi, Dar -es-Salaam, where Uganda and Kenya posted victories over Ethiopia and Djibouti respectively.
Uganda’s Crested Cranes registered a 1-0 victory and got revenge over Ethiopia, who eliminated them from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifiers in April this year. Uganda’s lone goal was netted by Fauzia Najjemba, who broke the deadlock in the 79th minute with a fantastic goal from a tight right angle.
In another group B fixture played earlier on the day at the same venue, Kenya maintained their winning streak, after demolishing Djibouti 12- 0 and three hat-tricks were registered. The victory saw the Kenyan ladies cruising into the semifinals stage, joining the hosts and defending champions Mainland’s Kilimanjaro Queens, who were the first side to book their place into the knockout stage.
Jentrix Shikangwa netted the first hat-trick for Kenya in the 14th, 17th and 56th minutes and her colleague Mercy Airo netted the second in the 53rd, 61st and 65th minutes and Mwanalima Jereko scored another hat-trick in 34th, 87th and 90th minutes, while Janet Bundi, Vivian Makokha were also on target as Kenya sealed massive victory.
The victory saw Uganda Crested Crane and Kenya tie on six points and 14 goals points from two games and 14 goals at the top of group B. Ethiopia are placed third without a point and Djibouti are at the bottom also without a point although they have shipped in more goals compared to Ethiopia.
Djibouti conceded 25 goals after losing 13-0 to Uganda in their opening group match, before suffering a 12-0 defeat against Kenya and Ethiopia conceded three goals after yesterday’s 1-0 and 2-0 defeat against Kenya.
Uganda and Kenya will face each other to determine which team finishes top of group A, while Ethiopia will play against minnows Djibouti in their last group stage match and the regional tournament which kicked off last Saturday will reach its climax on November 25th, with the play-off for third place and the final.