South Africa will take on East African guest nation Uganda in Sunday’s final of the 2019 COSAFA Women’s Under-17 Championship after both won through their semifinal matches on Friday.
It is perhaps a fitting decider between the two most accomplished sides in the competition as they fight for the right to lift the trophy in the inaugural COSAFA tournament in this age-group.
It is an intriguing fixture between a Ugandan side that have been at their free-flowing best in this competition, and South Africa who bring their usual organisation and structure.
The final will be played at the St. François Xavier Stadium at 15h00 local time (11h00 GMT), with the third-place play-off between semifinal losers Botswana and Zambia to kick-off at 11h00 (07h00 GMT).
Uganda breezed into the final with a 12-0 defeat of Botswana and their three most potent players were again on target.
Juliet Nalukenge netted a hat-trick to take her tally for the competition to 17 and just about out of sight for the Golden Boot.
Behind her in second place is Fauzia Najjemba, who scored six goals against Botswana for 12 in the competition, while Margret Kunihira also got three in the game and now has nine overall.
Uganda have scored 44 goals in the competition in their four games, the trio have 38 of those on their own, clearly point the way to danger for South Africa in Sunday’s final.
Botswana simply had no answer to the quality of the East Africans, and after trailing 3-0 midway through the first half, looked as though they would have no answer to Uganda.
It was a bit tougher going for South Africa, who edged Zambia 2-1 in their semifinal, but deservedly came out on top.
Oyisa Marhasi opened the scoring with a tap-in after Zambia goalkeeper Inghu’tu Muchahabali spilled a shot from the edge of the box from South Africa skipper Jessica Wade.
It was the 150th goal scored in just 14 matches in the tournament, though there would be two more.
Zambian were level on 28 minutes though and it was a superb strike from the dangerous Maweta Chilenga that crashed into the back of the net from 30-yards.
But in the classy Wade, South Africa always had a match-winner and her free-kick from some distance out sailed in over the head of Muchahabali five minutes into the second period.
Uganda 12 (Kunihira 6′, 35′, 58′, Nalukenge 14′, 25′, 47′, Najjenba 38′, 45′, 46′, 62′, 65′, 82′) Botswana 0
South Africa 2 (Marhasi 17’, Wade 49’) Zambia 1 (Chilenga 28’)
Botswana vs Zambia (KO 11h00) – St. François Xavier Stadium
Uganda vs South Africa (KO 15h00) – St. François Xavier Stadium
Matches Played: 14
Goals scored: 152
Biggest victory: South Africa 28 Seychelles 0 (Group B, September 21)
Most goals in a game: 28 – South Africa 28 Seychelles 0 (Group B, September 21)
17 goals – Juliet Nalukenge (Uganda)
12 – Fauzia Najjemba (Uganda)
10 – Oyisa Marhasi (South Africa)
9 – Margret Kunihira (Uganda)
7 – Florence Kasonde (Zambia)
6 – Bofelo Rantsho (Botswana), Alinah Lalasoa (Madagascar), Tiffany Kortjie (South Africa)
5 – Pearl Sikwane (Botswana), Jessica Wade (South Africa)
4 – Shelly Masumo, Cindy Banda (both Zambia)
3 – Lydia Razanajohary, Marie Raveloarisoa (both Madagascar), Tiyana Carollissen, Nabeelah Galant, Sonika Mzingeli, Nelly Gamede (all South Africa), Shakira Nyinagahirwa (Uganda), Tisilile Lungu, Maweta Chilenga (both Zambia)
2 – Yaone Modise, Christinah Monyatsi, Lorato Motlogelwa (all Botswana), Jenny Randriamialimanantsoa (Madagascar), Jerusha Ramasawmy (Mauritius), Sonika Mzingeli, Christy Noble (both South Africa), Comfort Selemani (Zambia)
1 – Tlhompho Gabana, Kaone Mbongwe, Serati Modisenyane (all Botswana), Moinahedji Ali (Comoros), Iloala Aniera, Laurencia Raheriarisoa, Charline Rondromalala (Madagascar), Marie Quirin, Marie Verloppe (both Mauritius), Yolanda Ndluli, Shakira O’Malley, Hlela Philisani (all South Africa), Stella Musibika, Daphine Nyayenga, Gillian Akadinda (all Uganda), Esther Banda (Zambia)