By Ronald Ssekandi, Andrew Oryada JINJA,
Uganda (Xinhua) -- Clad in their
yellow jerseys, Rwanda’s national women football team took on
their Tanzanian counterparts Kilimanjaro Queens on Monday in the
eastern Ugandan tourist town of Jinja.
It was a tough game
as the Queens brave the scorching sunshine to beat the equally
strong Rwandese side in the ongoing first ever regional women’s
signifies Women’s football breaking away from always playing
second place to men’s football.
“In our playing days
we did not have this tournament and it was difficult to discover
how good our team was. We only played once in two years and it
made us feel useless because of lack of enough playing time at
competitive level,” Magida Nantanda, Uganda’s head coach told
previously featured in Uganda’s national women team, Crested
Cranes, said women football can no longer play second place.
The tournament is
held under the auspices of the Council for East and Central
Africa Football Associations (CECAFA), a regional football
Teams from Kenya,
Burundi, Zanzibar, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Rwanda and hosts Uganda
are tussling it out.
Cecafa Secretary General told Xinhua in a recent interview that
the region wants to emulate West Africa where women football is
He argued that
although the development of women football like many other
sports face financial constraints, Uganda taking up the
initiative to host the inaugural tournament is a good signal.
Uganda’s FA President urged other members to have collective
efforts to boost the development of women football.
“We realize football
lacks lots of support from stakeholders but we need to start
from somewhere and in Uganda we already have the Women’s League
and also want to encourage other Cecafa member nations to do the
same,” Magogo said.
On the pitch, the
women players are showing that they are taking women football to
a higher level.
“We are happy to
start the tournament with a win although my defenders did not
play so well in the first half,” Tanzania’s coach Sebastian
Nkoma told Xinhua after the game. Grace Marie Nyinawumuntu, the
Rwanda coach said despite the loss they will work hard to try
and win their second game against Ethiopia.
continues on Tuesday with two games on card. Burundi, who
walloped Zanzibar 10-1 in the opening match, will face Kenya’s
Harambee Starlets in the first match before hosts Uganda Crested
Cranes battle Zanzibar in the second game.
Uganda to host inaugural CECAFA
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Uganda is set to host the inaugural Council for
East and Central Africa Football Associations (CECAFA) Women
Championship later this week.
the secretary general of CECAFA, told a media briefing in
Nairobi that the tournament scheduled between Sept. 11 and 20 in
the town of Jinja has attracted seven teams from the region.
“It is all systems
go except for the small issue of the prize structure to be
awarded to the winners, and which will be in place before the
tournament ends after we finalize with our sponsors,” Musonye
The competition will
feature teams from Uganda, Kenya, Burundi and Zanzibar who are
all drawn in Group A, and Ethiopia, Tanzania and Rwanda who will
battle it out in Group B.
“The women have in
the past challenged us to give them a platform to compete since
women’s football has taken root in the region and we have thrown
the challenge back to them and expect a good competition from
them in return,” Musonye said.
The CECAFA region
has 12 member nations, but women’s football is developed in only
seven nations, with South Sudan, Sudan, Somalia, Djibouti and
Eritrea all struggling to put women’s football in place.
Uganda made history
by becoming the only country on the entire African continent
with a national women’s league.
because of its inactivity on the international arena for over 17
months, Uganda remains among the 40 countries not ranked by FIFA
as per the latest women’s rankings released in December 2015.
On the CECAFA front,
only Kenya and Tanzania have a FIFA ranking.