Twiga Stars settle second at UNAF tournament

NATIONAL women football team, Twiga Stars finished second in the just ended Union of North Africa Federation (UNAF) tournament as Morocco emerged champions.

Twiga Stars battled to a 1-1 draw with hosts Tunisia at the El Kram Stadium in Rades, in their last match of the campaign yesterday to post nine points, while Morocco beat Algeria 2-0 to finish top on 12 points after winning all four games.

Tanzania played pretty well in the tournament and won two games against Mauritania by 7-0 and Algeria 3-2; drew 1-1 against Tunisia and lost 2-3 against Morocco.

In yesterday’s encounter Twiga Stars had to come from behind to pull level in the second half through Aisha Masaka after Tunisia took the lead in the first half.

The game started at a cracking pace and in less than five minutes, Tunisia got two set pieces with one producing a goal.

The first shot was well saved by the Tanzania goalkeeper, Zubeda Mgunda, while the second strike changed the score board to read 1-0 after it overpowered the keeper.

After conceding, Twiga Stars pushed for an equliser with several forays upfront but wasted numerous scoring opportunities notable was Captain Asha Rashid’s bicycle kick effort that went inches wide.

Twiga Stars made yet another attempt from a set piece, when Amina Ally stepped up to take a shot after Mwanahamisi Omary was fouled in the area but her fierce strike was well saved by Tunisian goalkeeper.

Twiga Stars maintained pressure, launching attack after attack but the Tunisian defenders stood resolute to thwart the attempts. Tunisia slowed down the tempo and employed delaying tactics.

After the break, Twiga Stars came more rejuvenated. Head Coach Bakari Shime introduced Opa Clement who replaced Asha Rashid.

The changes energised Twiga Stars as Opa’s speed and tenacity gave defenders torrid time.

Twiga Stars effort paid off when Aisha Masaka pulled level, finishing off from a corner kick.

However, Opa was sent off for misbehaving. Twiga Stars squad included Zubeda Mgunda, Fatuma Issa, Ester Mabanza, Enika Kasonga, Fatuma Khatibu, Juliet Singano, Amina Ally, Diana Lucas, Asha Rashid, Mwanahamis Omary and Asha Hamza.

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