Ugandan Champions Lady Doves FC put up a great show as they finished third on Thursday to return to Uganda with a bronze medal at the just concluded inaugural CAF Women’s Champions League Qualifiers in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.
The third place and final matches were graced by FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura and handed over the trophy to eventual winners Vihiga Queens of Kenya who will now represent the CECAFA region at the final tournament in Egypt later this year.
Lady Doves defeated Simba Queens of Tanzania 2-1 thanks to goals by Spencer Nakacwa and Fazilah Ikwaput. The two teams also met in the group stages but played to a barren draw.
Lady Doves coach Fred Musiime was overwhelmed with emotions after his charges saw off Simba Queens, a result that earned the Masindi-based club a cash prize of $10,000.
‘Our ultimate target was winning the tournament and eventually qualify for the CAF Women’s Champions League finals in Egypt. We fell short of the target but many positive lessons learnt and we are happy about our current status. Finishing third is no mean feat considering the level of competition and quality of opposition we faced especially in the latter stages. I have a majorly young squad and I am certain lessons have been drawn and such experience will drive us forward. We shall come back a better side for another Competition’ remarked Musiime.
Best Defensive record
The Lady Doves boasted of the best defensive record at the two-week tournament having conceded only 2 goals out of the 53 scored in the entire tournament by teams that took part. They were the only side not to concede in the group stages. They conceded only in the semifinal stage (1-1) against Commercial Bank of Ethiopia FC before falling on penalties 5-3. The second goal let in was during the 3rd place play-off against Simba Queens FC (won 2-1).
Nakaziro can’t stop keeping clean sheets, winning accolades
The Lady Doves skipper won the best Goalkeeper’s award. Her amazing display at the Championship saw her keep three clean sheets. It is a wonderful year for her already as she was also voted the best in her position when Lady Doves won the FUFA Women Super League in May at the FUFA Technical Centre, Njeru.
FUFA Presidential Promise
Each member of the team will now receive $100 as earlier promised by the FUFA president Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim for making it out of the group that had Simba Queens, PVP FC of Burundi and FAD FC from Djibouti. This would have increased to $300 had the team reached the finals and to $500 for winning the Championship.
Lady Doves will be proud of themselves. Ugandan Champions, Bronze Medalists at the CAF Women Champions League Qualifiers (CECAFA) and producing the best goalkeeper at home and in CECAFA.