By Majuto Omary
Dar es Salaam. Tanzania – Twiga Stars’ dreams of booking a place in the finals of the women’s version of the Africa Cup of Nations went up in thin smoke yesterday when they suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Ethiopia.
The Ethiopians netted the lone goal in the 65th minute through Birtukan Gebrekristos off a neat pass by Shetaye Sisay at the National Stadium to enable her team sail through on 3-1 aggregate.
Sisay made full use of the hosts’ defensive mix-up to brilliantly place the ball to Gebrekristos who, in turn, unleashed a shot that gave goalie Fatuma Omary no chance.
Twiga Stars, who lost 2-1 to the Ethiopians in the first leg two weeks ago, needed at least one clear goal to see off their opponents and qualify for the finals set for November in Equatorial Guinea.
The hosts were far from impressive in yesterday’s match and they could have lost even by a bigger margin had it not been superb saves by goalkeeper Fatuma.
After a lacklustre first half, the visitors came out a more aggressive side on resumption and called the hosts’ goalie into action several times in the first five minutes of the half.
Twiga Stars missed two easy chances in the 58th and 59th minutes, the culprit being Asha Rashid as the hosts pressed for a goal they needed to sail through.
Four minutes later, defender Sophia Mwasikili blocked a goal-bound shot by Woinshet Tsegaye with goalie Fatuma well beaten.
Coach Boniface Mkwasa was frank in his assessment of the match, saying the Ethiopians deserved the victory.
Twiga- Fatuma Omary, Fatuma Khatib, Pulkaria Chalaji, Flora Kayanda, Sophia Mwasikili, Mwapewa mMumwa, Amina Ali, Etoe Mienzi, Fatuma Mustapha, Asha Rashid and Mwanahamis Omary.
Ethiopia– Liya Shibru, Buhan Endae, Woinshet Tsegaye, Tirunachi Mengesh, Hiwot Dngeso, Berktawit Girma, Edenshifeaw, Zulka Juhad, Shetaye Sisay, Birtukan Gebrekirstos and Erehima Zera.
Source: The Citizen Reporter