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Hosts Uganda to face Eritrea in CECAFA final

Uganda Cranes players celebrating their goal against Tanzania during the semi-finals of the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup at the Lugogo Complex in Kampala on December 17, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

KAMPALA, Uganda, Dec 17 – Fahad Bayo scored at the death as hosts Uganda Cranes beat Tanzania’s Kilimanjaro Stars by a solitary goal to sail to the finals of the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup where they will face Eritrea on Thursday.

In a tightly contested match Bayo who had missed several sitters in the match headed home from a Mustafa Kiiza cross in the 88th minute to send Cranes flying into the finale where they will face the side they beat 2-0 in the group stages.

Tanzania will meanwhile drop to the loser’s final where they will clash with Kenya’s Harambee Stars in the contest for the bronze medal.

Bayo had a clean chance earlier on in the 28th minute when he was sent through on goal by Allan Okello, but couldn’t beat the keeper one on one, Aishi Manula saving with his feet and Bright Anukani skying the rebound.

Keeper Manula came out with injury just after making the save after Bayo’s boot came cluttering on his face after the effort was saved. He was brought out for Metacha Mnata.

Uganda Cranes forward Joakim Ojera surges forward under pressure from Tanzania’s Gadiel Michael during the semi-finals of the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup at the Lugogo Complex in Kampala on December 17, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

Tanzania also had their fair share of chances, Herman Mpepo forcing keeper Charles Lukwago to a brilliant save with a shot from range.

Okello had a chance for the Ugandans at the stroke of halftime when Kevin Yondani’s clearance fell kindly on his path on the right with keeper Mnata off his line, but the youngster shot wide.

On the hour mark, Uganda thought they had won a penalty when Joakim Ojera came tumbling down under a challenge from Gadiel Michael, but the referee’s decision to award a spot kick was turned down by his assistant who flagged that the foul was just at the edge of the box.

Uganda kept their search and were rewarded with just three minutes of regulation time left with Bayo scoring his second goal of the tournament.

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