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2020 Olympic Qualifier: Hard-fighting Crested Cranes Lose to Ethiopia in First Leg

The Uganda National Women’s team, The Crested Cranes,  scored two crucial away goals, losing 3-2 to Ethiopia in the first leg of their Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifier played on Wednesday in Addis Ababa.

The Cranes suffered an early setback in the 19th minute as Aisha Namukisa diverted the ball into her own net.

The Ugandans had a late first half chance to go level before the break but US-based star, Sandra Nabweteme,  saw her penalty hit the woodwork.

TesfaMariam Abera doubled the lead for the hosts in the 76 before Guta Serkadis added the third three minutes later.

As the hosts thought the tie was wrapped up, Uganda pulled a late come back but were unable to find the crucial equaliser.

Meskererem Konka succumbed to the pressure from the determined Cranes to score an own goal in the last minute of added time.

UCU Lady Cardinals’ Hasifah Nassuna then added the second in the second minute of added time but the Ethiopians,  who were now awaken fought hard to run the time.

The team is expected back on Thursday morning as they prepare for the must-win second leg on Saturday 6th April at the StarTimes stadium in Lugogo.

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How they lined up;

Ruth Aturo (GK), Viola Namuddu, Grace Aluka, Aisha Namukisa, Shadia Nankya, Yudaya Nakayenze, Lililan Mutuuzo, Phiona Nabbumba, Shamira Nalugya (Fazila Ikwaput), Sandra Nabweteme (Hasifah Nassuna) and Zainah Namuleme (Fauzia Najjemba)

Unused subs: Daisy Nakaziro (GK), Juliet Nalukenge, Raticia Nabbosa, Amagat Marrion, Tracy Jones Akiror and Nanziri Resty

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