Harambee Starlets on Tuesday stormed the semi finals of the Cecafa (Council of East and Central African Football Association) Women’s Championship after thrashing minnows Djibouti 12-0 at the Chamazi Stadium in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
This was Starlets’ second win after they beat arch rivals Ethiopia 2-0 in their opening match on Sunday afternoon at the same venue, and they are perched on top of their Group B with six points pending the outcome of the match between Uganda and Ethiopia.
For Djibouti, who had lost 13-0 in their previous match against Uganda’s Crested Cranes, it was the end of the tournament as they will now return home early.
In the high scoring, lopsided match, Jentrix Shikangwa grabbed four goals, while Mercy Airo and Mwanalima Adam recorded a hat trick each and Vivian Makokha and Janet Bundi found the net with a goal each to complete the thorough humiliation of Djibouti.
Corazone Aquino, who was the key striker in the match, was not lucky to find the back of the net, but she did the groundwork and ensured that the three-prong front line of herself, Makokha and Lydia Waganda was well supplied with the balls.
Goalkeeper Judith Osimbo, who turns out for Women Premier League side Gaspo Ladies, could be seen quite idle and lonely between the posts because try as they did, Djibouti ladies were simply unable to go past their half of the pitch.
Before the match, Starlets coach David Ouma had asked the team to be “ruthless” in their subsequent matches following their subtle 2-0 win over Ethiopia, and based on the tempo of the match, it is clear that his charges took his advice quite seriously.
“I had actually planned to employ a defensive approach against Djibouti because they are quite unfamiliar opponents, but after the first half it was clear that we would easily win the match and so I allowed the girls to enjoy themselves on the pitch.
“We are now onto the next hurdle which is tougher than the3 group stage, so I want to believe that the players will not lose focus or dwell too much on this victory,” he said on phone from Dar es Salaam.
In other matches played Tuesday, hosts Tanzania cruised to the semi-finals of competition after thumping Burundi 4-0 at a fully packed Azam Complex in Dar es Salaam.
The CECAFA Women's Championship is an association football tournament for teams from Eastern Africa organised by Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (Ceecafa).