The euphoria at the historic Mandela National Stadium in Kampala after Uganda Cranes’ famous victory over the Egyptian Pharaohs in the group E of the FIFA World Cup qualification match was inevitably unexplained.
FT: Uganda ???????? 1 Egypt ???????? 0 (Emmanuel Okwi 51st min)
Emmanuel Arnold Okwi was the hero on the red letter day for the CECAFA giants with a well taken strike six minutes at the onset of the second stanza of the fairly attended game.
Before Okwi’s moment of brilliance, the game was still barren.
The hosts had been the better side with countless goal scoring opportunities in the opening stanza.
Earlier in the first half, Egyptian legendary goalkeeper Essam ElHadary was called upon twice to tame seemingly goal bound shots from Emmanuel Okwi and a powerful header from Derrick Nsibambi.
The Pharoahs had a goal disallowed by Soliman Mohamoud for off side in the 35th minute.
A string of passes five minutes into the second half found Okwi on the right edge of the goal area.
He beat two of his markers before shooting for the lone strike.
Dennis Onyango was cautioned late in the game as temper flared at the climax of the game.
Farouk Miya limped out for William Kizito Luwagga, Geofrey Sserunkuma replaced Okwi and there was a late change at the stroke of full time when Ochaya paved way for Isaac Muleme.
Uganda is now top of group E with 7 points with the return leg coming up on Tuesday in Alexanderia.
Meanwhile, the two other countries in the same group Ghana and Congo lock horns on Friday.
Uganda Cranes will fly out of the country for the return leg on Saturday, 2nd September 2017.