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AFCON U20 Zonal Qualifiers: Hippos start title defence with win over Tanzania

Uganda Hippos embarked on the mission to return to the U20 AFCON tournament on a bright note with a 2-0 victory over rivals Tanzania on Saturday evening at the Al Hilal Stadium.

The first quarter of the gamw witnessed a cagey approach from both sides.

A minute later, Ibrahim Kasinde chip from the right met Abasi Kyeyune but the latter failed to control it in the opponents box.

In the 23rd minute, skipper Isma Mugulusi had a chance to break the deadlock but his shot from the 18 yard box was blocked.

The awaited moment then came in the 31st minute as Titus Ssematimba broke the deadlock with a cool finish.

Three minutes later, the Hippos doubled their lead through Rogers Mugisha who capitalized on a Kasinde minute on the right, a move that was initiated from the middle of the park by Frank Katongole.

In the second stanza, the Tanzanians returned desperate to change things but the Hippos were resilient.

The 63rd minute saw Hippos make changes introducing Faisal Wabyoona and Simon Mukisa for Kasinde and Ronald Madoi respectively.

With a quarter an hour to play, defender Samson Kasozi made a timely goal line clearance to deny the visitors after goalie Abdu Magada was beaten.

Tanzanian continued pressing for a consolation with a 78th minute cross from the left beautifully punched away by Magada.

With 10 minutes to play, Hippos made the third change with Kyeyune paving way for Simon Ssemayange.

The Jackson Mayanja coached side managed to keep it tight at the back to ensure they walk away with maximum points and a clean sheet.

Hippos will return to action on Saturday 05th November against Ethiopia at Al Hilal Stadium.