Namibia claimed the 2016 COSAFA Castle Cup Plate trophy when they beat Zambia 1-0 in the final at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Windhoek, Namibia on Friday night.
Captain Ronald Ketjijere stroked home a penalty midway through the first half to give the Brave Warriors the Plate title having lost their hold on the Cup this year.
Namibia become the third winners of the Plate competition after Mozambique (2013) and Malawi (2015).
Namibia deserved the win after creating more chances in the game, but it was a nervy finish as Zambia piled on the pressure in the closing stages.
Namibia were ahead when Donashano Malama handled a cross from the lively Deon Hotto and Ketjijere easily scored from the spot on 21 minutes.
“People say the Plate is second best to the trophy, but we had a lot of first team players absent,” Namibia coach Ricardo Mannetti said after the game. “It shows Namibia have a lot of depth. We are not scared to take the on the big guns of Africa now.”
Saturday will see the medals awarded in the main Cup competition with the third-place play-off and final to be staged, also at the Sam Nujoma Stadium.
DR Congo and Swaziland play for the bronze medal at 15h00, with the latter eager to finish a successful tournament on a high after their semifinal mauling at the hands of South Africa.
DR Congo have yet to concede a goal in this competition and were ousted in the semifinals by Botswana on penalties.
The final sees South Africa go for a record-equalling fourth trophy win in the COSAFA Castle Cup, while Botswana are looking for their first ever major trophy.
FRIDAY’S PLATE FINAL RESULT
Zambia 0 Namibia 1 (Ketjijere 21’)
SATURDAY’S CUP THIRD-PLACE PLAYOFF
Swaziland vs DR Congo (15h00 local; 14h00 GMT) – Sam Nujoma Stadium
SATURDAY’S CUP FINAL
South Africa vs Botswana (17h30 local; 16h30 GMT) – Sam Nujoma Stadium
Group A P W D L GF GA Pts
Swaziland 3 2 1 0 7 2 7
Zimbabwe 3 1 2 0 7 2 5
Madagascar 3 1 1 1 1 1 4
Seychelles 3 0 0 3 0 10 0
Group B P W D L GF GA Pts
Lesotho 3 3 0 0 6 0 9
Malawi 3 2 0 1 4 1 6
Mauritius 3 1 0 2 2 4 3
Angola 3 0 0 3 0 7 0
Matches Played: 21
Goals scored: 47
Biggest victory: Zimbabwe 5 Seychelles 0 (Group A, June 15)
Most goals in a game: 6 – South Africa 5 Swaziland 1 (Semifinals, June 22)
5 goals – Felix Badenhorst (Swaziland)
3 – Gabadinho Mhango (Malawi), Jane Thaba-Ntso (Lesotho)
2 – Menzi Masuku (South Africa), Lawrence Mhlanga (Zimbabwe), Ronald Pfumbidzai (Zimbabwe), Hendrick Somaeb (Namibia)
1 – Luis Dorza (Mauritius), Claudel Fanomenza (Madagascar), Miracle Gabeya (Malawi), Teenage Hadebe (Zimbabwe), Deon Hotto (Namibia), Hlompho Kalake (Lesotho), Jeremea Kamela (Lesotho), Paul Katema (Zambia), Itamunua Keimuine (Namibia), Ronald Ketjijere (Namibia), Tumelo Khutlang (Lesotho), Thabiso Kutumela (South Africa), Basia Makepe (Lesotho), Judas Moseamedi (South Africa), Sera Motebang (Lesotho), Gift Motupa (South Africa), Tatenda Mudehwe (Zimbabwe), Njubulo Ndlovo (Swaziland), Wonder Nhleko (Swaziland), Nelson Omba (DR Congo), Lebogang Phiri (South Africa), Spencer Sautu (Zambia), Andy Sophie (Mauritius), Obadiah Tarumbwa (Zimbabwe), Tony Tsabedze (Swaziland, Phafa Tsosane (Lesotho), Charles Zulu (Zambia)
Own goals – Dacosta Angula (Namibia)