2019 Copa Dar es Salaam Beach Soccer
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Tanzania 3(0)-3(2) Uganda
The Uganda National Beach Soccer Team-Sand Cranes got off to a winning start in the Copa Dar es Salaam Beach Soccer Tournament on Sunday.
The Sand Cranes beat hosts 2-0 in penalties after a 3-3 draw in normal time.
Lule Paul put through his own net during the first period of the game to give the hosts an early lead nut Davis Kasujja leveled for Uganda thus ending the first period on level terms.
Godfrey Lwesibawa headed in the second which separated the two sides at the start of the second period but Jaruph Juma restored parity moments later.
Stephano Wales and Lule Paul scored for Tanzania and Uganda respectively during the third period thus forcing the official to push the game to extra three minutes which seemed too little for more goals to separate the two sides.
More pressure mounted on both sides when the first referee blew the final whistle calling for shootouts to separate the two sides.
Godfrey Lwesibawa wasn’t afraid to lead the way and converted the first penalty for Uganda and then came time for team skipper and custodian Meddie Kibirige to save his team which he did by comfortably stopping Tanzania’s Abdulkadir Ally Tabib.
Uganda’s Magwali Ronald shot wide to give the hosts some hope of coming back to the game. Juma Sultan Ibrahim shot wide the second one for Tanzania and Byaruhanga Rica did no mistake rather than converting the last one for the Sand Cranes sending everyone into wild celebrations.
The Sand Cranes now sit second on the log with one point. Seychelles with three points, lead the way after winning their first game 6-3 against Burundi.
Team captain Meddie Kibirige thanked his teammates for the spirited fight and urged them to put celebrations on hold until the final day of the tournament.
“I thank my teammates for the spirited fight and tireless efforts that led us to victory, noted Kibirige.
“It hasn’t been an easy encounter but a point off the hosts is enough for us to build on in our bid to win the championship.”
The Sand Cranes return to the pitch on Tuesday against Burundi at 4.45 PM.