Sosala brace helps Zambia win against Namibia in AWC qualifier
The Zambia national women’s team kicked off the campaign to qualify for the 2016 Cameroun Africa Women Championship on a positive note after they over-powered Namibian 3 – 1 in the first leg, first round qualification match.
A brace from Noriah Sosala and a goal from Grace Chanda were enough to give Zambia a comfortable lead in a game which Namibia could have had a worse result.
Zambia did not allow the visitors to settle and were in front with only the second attack within the opening 5 minutes when Sosala unleashed a thunderbolt from outside the box which the goalkeeper failed to handle despite getting a hand to the ball.
Namibia then settled and controlled most of the proceedings in midfield with Zenatha Coleman and 19 year old Annouseka Kordom dictating the play in the middles of the pack.
However Zambia were comfortable to repel the attacks and play long balls to the speedy attackers and this paid off when Rhoda Chileshe dispossessed Coleman to play a long ball to Grace Chanda who controlled well on her chest after her marker misjudge the bounce of the ball to shoot past the on rushing goalkeeper in the 22nd minute.
With three minutes already indicated for the referee’s optional time, Zambia got a free kick on the right which Sosala took. Her in-swinging shot beat the goalie for Zambia to go into the break with a comfortable lead.
On the restart, Zambia seemed content with the scoreline and with the energy levels dropping, Kachinga assigned Chileshe to man-mark Coleman and Namibia no longer looked a threat once she was neutralized and Kordom substituted.
Zambia had chances coming their way and could have added another through Barbara Banda who was played through by Zambia’s best player on the day, midfield general, Mary Wilombe but the keeper was quick off her line to smother the Banda’s shot.
With Chileshe injured, Wilombe dropped into the holding role while substitute Esther Nakalange pushed forward and she could have added another but her shot was parried wide while Chanda’s header cleared off the line moments later.
A poor clearance from a corner in injury time saw 30 year old captain Uerikondjera Kasaona score with her back to the goal with a looping shot which was beyond Hazel Nali who did not have an awful lot to do in goal.
The two teams meet in the return fixture on Friday next week.
In 2014, Namibia beat Zambia 2 – 0 at AWC finals.
Earlier on Friday, Zimbabwe maintained their dominance over Tanzania with a 2-1 win at the latter’s backyard, Dar es Salaam. The visiting Mighty Warriors came from behind to snatch victory thanks to Erina Jeke’s double after Mwanahamisi Omary opened the scores on 17 minutes.
Should Zambia make it to the final qualifying round, they will meet the winners between Zimbabwe and Tanzania.
The final tournament has been fixed for 19 November – 3 December in the Cameroonian cities of Yaounde and Limbe.
Friday, 4 March 2016
Tanzania 1-2 Zimbabwe
Saturday, 5 March 2016
Mali 0-0 Morocco
Senegal 1-0 Guinea
Burkina Faso 0-0 Tunisia
Botswana 7-0 Mauritius
Zambia XI v Namibia
16- Hazel N Nali 4- Anita Mulenga 15-Annie Kibanji ( C) 13- Martha Tembo 2-Grace Zulu 6- Mary Wilombe 17-Barbra Banda 8-Rhoda Chileshe (Esther Nakalnge) 7-Misozi CR Zulu (Mary Mwakapila) 18-Grace Chanda 10- Noria Sosala
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