Soccer

Sentamu hands Uganda vital win

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Denis Iguma and Junior Yunus Santamu battle for the ball with Issoufou Dayo of Burkina Faso during the 2014 CAF

Denis Iguma and Junior Yunus Santamu battle for the ball with Issoufou Dayo of Burkina Faso during the 2014 CAF African Nations Championships Group B football match between Uganda and Burkina Faso at Athlone Stadium, Cape Town on Sunday evening. COURTESY  

By ANDREW MWANGUHYA

Posted  Monday, January 13   2014 at  14:37
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Yunus Sentamu scored in each half to hand Uganda a vital three points and Cranes’ first ever win at the Africa Nations Championship (Chan) as they beat Burkina Faso 2-1 in Cape Town, South Africa on Sunday. Substitute Cyrille Bayala grabbed Burkinabe’s consolation.

Victory lifts the Cranes to the top of Group B, Zimbabwe and Morocco having earlier played out a goalless draw.

Micho Sredojevic, the Cranes coach, and Ugandans will have been pleased by their performance especially that they came into the tournament as underdogs.

Having lost all three group matches, scoring only one goal, in the 2011 edition in Sudan, events at Anthlone Stadium were the first testament of improvement.

The opener from Sentamu was a brilliantly worked solo effort. The Vipers forward benefited from the Burkinabe’s defensive mix-up to beat three defenders including goalkeeper Mohamed Kabore and calmly slot into an empty net inside the opening 15 minutes.

That was enough to spark wild scenes from the over 700 Ugandan fans in the stadium. The Cranes took the half time lead into the break and were generally the better of the two teams.

Sentamu hit his and Uganda’s second on 73 minutes as Cranes continued pushing; the striker timing his run to half volley home substitute Francis Olaki’s brilliantly dinked in cross from the right.

Burkina Faso rallied and could have hit one back, Issoufou Dayo leaving the entire Cranes defence on their knees but his execution letting him down. But they did pull one back after sustained pressure saw goalkeeper Benjamin Ochan’s attempted save from Bayala’s low shot go though Isaac Muleme’s legs on the goal line.

However, the Cranes held on to record a much deserved victory. Uganda next face Zimbabwe while Morocco tussle is out with Burkina Faso.

amwanguhya@ug.nationmedia.com