Talisman Fahad Bayo nodded home with seven minutes left on the clock to inspire Uganda Cranes past the Taifa Stars and substantially book a final spot against Eritrea.
Coach Jonathan Mcknistry who rested almost all his Starters against Eritrea had to welcome them back for this encounter. It was only Paul Willa, Mustafa Kizza,John Revita and Joachiam Ojera kept their spots in the starting lineup after Sunday’s game.
A few minutes from kickoff, Okello had a chance to put Cranes into an early lead but the teenager placed his effort just wide.
In the 28th minute, Bayo missed out on a golden opportunity to make amends for Okello’s miss when he failed to beat goalie Ashi Manula off a well worked Okello pass. Bright Anukani pounced on the rebound but the ball went well wide.
And then, the next open chance fell to Tanzania’s Ditram Ntchimbi who came close to finding the back of the net but it was Charles Lukwago who made a late figuretip save to keep the visitors at bay.
Fater failing score, the Cranes disappointment continued moments later when the referee revoked his decision to awarding penalty after Joachim Ojera was brought down close to the forbidden area for a freekick citing that the winger had been brought fouled from outside the goal area.
The following moments got the crowds thinking about the shoot-outs that are usually the case for a draw after normal time, Fahad Bayo pounced onto a well driven cross from Mustafa Kizza to head into an empty net with 7 minutes left on the clock.
The Cranes, whose last finals appearances came 4 years ago will battle out with Eritrea for the 2019 CECAFA Senior Challenge throne on Thursday December 19th at Startimes Staduim, Lugogo.
Eritrea stunned defending champions Kenya 4-1 in the early game of the day to seal their first CECAFA final in their history.
Uganda XI: Charles Lukwago (GK), Paul Willa, Mustafa Kizza, John Revita, Halid Lwaliwa (c), Shafik Kagimu, Allan Okello, Bright Anukani, Joackim Ojera, Fahad Bayo, Ben Ocen
Subs: Joel Mutakubwa (GK), Mustafa Mujuzi, Paul Mbowa, Muzamiru Mutyaba, Joel Madondo, Mukwala Steven, Viane Ssekajugo, AbdulKarim Watambala, Nicolas Kasozi
Tanzania XI: Ashi Manula (GK)(c), Hassan Dilunga, Nickson Kibabage, Juma Mnyamani, Gadiel Kamagi, Ditram Nchimbi, Eleuter Mpepo, Bakari Nondo, Kelvin Yondani, Mzamiru Saidi, Jonas Mkunde
Subs: Metacha Mnata (GK), Robert Mapingano (GK), Baraka Majogoro, Lucas Almeida Kikoti, Paul John Nonga, Cleophace Mkandla, Mwaita Gereza, Mohamed Hussein