Victory eludes Uganda still against Bafana Bafana

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By Alex Bossa

In what Ugandans hoped would be the end to the Bafana Bafana dominance over the Uganda Cranes, the gods decided to remain crazy with the Bafana Bafana walking away with a 3-2 victory against the spirited Uganda Cranes at the Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg.

The game started with the senior Uganda national team the Cranes desperate for their first victory in four matches while the South Africans were looking to get back to winning ways after their disappointing AFCON 2020 campaign.

Uganda quickly got the lead they required through a diving header from Vipers’ Ibrahim Orit in the 17th minute after a fine cross from the new Cranes captain Emmanuel Okwi. Emmanuel Okwi himself had a chance to put the Cranes two goals ahead in the 19th minute after a poor clearance from Maela fell into Okwi’s way only for the Ugandan forward to shoot wide.

With the match ending 1-0 at half time in favour of the visitors, South Africa came back in the second half with a much-improved performance right from the start. Ismael Watenga who was not busy during the first half was quickly called into action in the 48th minute, making a fine save from a near post shot from Maela.

From there, the South Africans piled more pressure and their efforts were rewarded with two quick goals from first Evidence Makgopa in the 62nd minute and Bongokuhle Hlongwane in the 67th Minute. Substitute Evidence Makgopa’s equalizer was his debut goal after he was left unmarked by Murishid Juuko for a simple tap-in. Watenga was again called into action shortly after the equalizer with a fine save from Thabiso Kutumela’s shot.

After Uganda Cranes conceded the second goal, South Africa looked the likelier of the two to score and they were awarded in the 80th minute after a defensive mix up in the Crane’s 18-yard box gifted Evidence Makgopa his second goal of the evening.

Substitute Abdul Lumala’s 88th minute goal was too late for the Uganda Cranes to force a comeback as the South Africans held on to their lead.

Uganda Cranes player rating

Ismael Watenga (6), Murushid Juuko (3), Halid Lwaliwa (4), Mustafa Kizza (3), Paul Willa (4), Moses Waiswa (5), Tadeo Lwanga (5), Shafik Kagimu (5), Allan Okello (4), Ibrahim Orit (7), Emmanuel Okwi (6).

Subs: Stephen Mukwala (5), Ibrahim Mugulusi (3), Abdul Lumala (7)

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