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Cranes Beat Rwanda to Win 12th Cecafa Title

Goalkeeper Abel Dhaira saved two penalties as Uganda Cranes beat Rwanda to lift their 12th Cecafa Tusker Senior Challenge Cup trophy at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on Saturday.
Goalkeeper Abel Dhaira saved two penalties as Uganda Cranes beat Rwanda to lift their 12th Cecafa Tusker Senior Challenge Cup trophy at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on Saturday.

The game ended 2-2 in normal time with extra 30 minutes producing no goals. Defender Issac Isinde, Emmanuel Okwi and skipper Andy Mwesigwa converted for the Cranes, while Eric Gasana and Albert Ngabo both had their kicks saved by Dhaira.

An excited Cranes skipper Andy Mwesigwa described the record title as sweet adding that God had answered their prayers. Mwesigwa has now made it four Cecafa trophies to his CV. The Cranes had twice struggled for goals twice coming from behind to equalize through defender Isinde and an own goal by the tournament’s top scorer Olivier Karekezi. Former reject in the Ugandan League Meddie Kagere scored the two goals for Rwanda in normal time.

Federation of Uganda Football Association President Lawrence Mulindwa said it was good Uganda had beaten a stubborn Rwanda team. Mulindwa said games between Uganda and Rwanda are usually tough, thanking the Cranes team for keeping their composure to lift the title.

Uganda’s Ambassador in Tanzania Prof. Ibrahim Mukiibi also congratulated the team for the good display. The Cranes have now won three Cecafa trophies under Scottish born coach Bobby Williamson.

Williamson thanked the team for reacting well after going down twice. Rwanda coach Sredejovic Micho Milutin said it was a tough contest and was happy his team only lost in penalties in the whole tournament. The former SC Villa coach congratulated the Cranes after the game.

The Cranes were later crowned champions and received gold medals and US$30,000, while Rwanda took silver medals and US$20,000. Sudan, who beat hosts and 2010 champions Tanzania 1-0 in the play-off, took home US$10,000 and bronze medals. 

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