Cosafa U17 Women Championship
Uganda 2-1 South Africa
Uganda national U17 women side was on Sunday crowned the inaugural champions of the Cosafa U17 women championship after a hard fought 2-1 win at South Africa in the final played at the St Francois Xavier stadium, Mauritius.
Fauzia Najjemba opened the scoring in the 56th minute to give Uganda a 1-0 half time lead before Tiffany Kortjie came off the bench in the 58th minute to head home the equalizer in the 74th minute.
With player of the match performance, skipper Juliet Nalukenge scored her 18th goal of the tournament with just four minutes to the clock as Uganda became the historic inaugural champions.
Uganda created the most and better chances in the tight affair but South Africa’s goal keeper Kalabo Mohale was up to the task -keeping put Uganda especially in the opening half.
Nalukenge not only won the top scorers’ gong, but also clinched three Player of the match accolades from the five games played while Uganda’s Daphine Nyayenga was named the tournament best goal keeper.
“I am grateful to the almighty that the girls managed to achieve this. South Africa is a good team and really played well. They overpowered our midfield in the first half but after adding more midfielders in the second stanza, we managed to play and push them hard. I thank the organizers for the invite and Fufa for the opportunity,” noted Uganda coach Ayub Khalifa, who made only one change in the starting XI.
Kawempe Muslim SS midfielder Samali Nakacwa returned to the starting line up to replace Katuuso Community SS’ Catherine Nagadya, who started at the semifinal against Botswana.
Ayub, also the Kawempe Muslim women FC coach, was at his first national team engagement and the victory writes a big statement to Fufa that had taken long to entrust him with national duties. Zambia beat Botswana 3-0 in the third place play-off.
Uganda returns home with only the prize money having participated as a guest team as South Africa take the trophy home.