A resilient Tanzania held Uganda to a goalless draw at a rainy Mandela national stadium in Nambole on Saturday.
A contest of missed chances saw Taifa Stars hold Uganda Cranes to a goalless stalemate.
In a match marred by heavy rain, both sides squandered numerous goal scoring opportunities and as a result, shared the spoils.
The game started at a high pace with Uganda mounting pressure on Tanzania within the first half, but Tanzania also had some clear opportunities as they managed to grow into the game.
Hassan Wasswa missed a free header for Uganda in the 2nd minute of the game from a Farouk Miya free kick. In the 5th minute, Moses Waisswa set another chance but it went begging, denying Cranes a lead. Miya also had a free kick taken in the 6th minute but it went into the keeper’s hands.
Moses Waisswa played twice Joseph Ochaya through on goal but the attacker wasted both chances as the sides headed to the interval deadlocked.
As Tanzania grew into the game, Uganda captain Dennis Onyango was called into action early in first half and emphatically denied Mbwanna Samatta in one on one situation.
Emmanuel Okwi also had an opportunity to put Uganda into the driving seat from Onyango's long ball, but he put the ball off the target. Uganda had more chances from Wadada and Iguma but the Taifa Stars defence was alert to clear the ball. One minute was added in the first half and it ended into goalless first half.
In the second half, Emmanuel Amunika who was overseeing his first match as Taifa Stars coach, would feel hard done by the referee’s decision soon after the restart as Emmanuel Ulimwengu had the ball in the back of the net in the 69th minute, but instead of playing the advantage, the middle man blew for a free kick to Tanzania near the edge of the box.
Uganda's skipper Onyango had to make a couple of saves to deny the Taifa Stars a goal in the 48th and 70th minutes. Ochaya had a couple of more chances in the second half to spare but Aishi Salum was not to be breached on the day.
Murushid Jjuko was yellow-carded in the 51st minute after fouling Tanzania's striker. Tanzania's captain was also given a yellow card in the 64th minute to book registration in the referee’s books.
Both teams made some substitutions in the second half but these had less impact, in the 67th minute Patrick Kaddu came in for Ochaya but failed to create an impact for Cranes side. In 72nd minute, Taifa Stars also made their first change when Himid Mau Mkani replaced tired Domayo and calmed things down. In the 78th minute, Tanzania made a second change with Farid Mussasha replacing Kamagi but had less impact going forward.
In the 87th minute, Cranes made another change and Kizito Luwagga replaced Miya and Cranes ceded possession almost every time the ball fell at Kizito's feet, whose decision making was questionable.
The game left Sebastien Desabre’s eyebrows raised, as he continues to struggle to create an impact with the Cranes since taking over.