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13 July 2019 | Uncategorized

Uganda register first points with win over Samoa

The Ugandans got their first win on the board with a 69-48 victory against Samoa.

The two sides have previous experience at multiple World Cups, but prior to this had never competed against one other at this level. 

It was Uganda who settled quickest into the match as they raced into the lead. Goal shooter Mary Nuba Cholock and goal attack Stella Oyella – the first player ever to be sent off in a World Cup match yesterday against England – scored seven times between them inside the opening four minutes. 

The former, in particular, was left unmarked far too easily for the Samoan coaching staff’s liking, collecting the ball and converting with ease at times. 

By the end of the first quarter, the Uganda attackers’ movement to outfox Samoa’s Gene Solia-Gibb and Rachel Rasmussen and their clinical finishing – missing just twice between them – saw Uganda take a 22-11 lead.

Samoan goal shooter Tee Salanoa converted eight of her nine opportunities – with Sanita To’o also scoring three – but Uganda were largely in possession, limiting their opponents to fewer chances than they were treated to themselves. 

In the second 15 minutes, Samoa’s Ariana Luamanu, who turned 17 less than a fortnight ago and is the World Cup’s youngest player, entered the field of play.

As a consequence of her introduction or otherwise, Samoa’s performance improved as they scored 12 times – one more than in the first quarter – and limited Uganda to four fewer goals than their opening segment, although the match leaders did still further increase their advantage. 

At the halfway mark in the match, Uganda led 40-23 and were thoroughly in control of the contest. 

The third quarter could have seen Uganda press home that advantage and really stamp their authority on the tie, but Samoa once again limited them to fewer goals than in the previous quarter.

The decision to hold what they had rather than expend unnecessary energy on really pinning Samoa back proved to be a wise one, as Uganda headed into the final quarter of the game 24 goals clear.

With that cushion, Cholock was replaced for the final 15 minutes – ending the match having converted 35 of her 40 attempts – with the goal shooter’s work complete. 

Samoa produced an admirable, battling showing in the final quarter, scoring 15 times and conceding only 12 to close the deficit to 21 goals, but the match finished 69-48 to Uganda, with their lead gathered in the first half sufficient for them to glide home to victory. 

Uganda will face Scotland in their Group D fixture on Sunday, with the game now promising to be enthralling battle to finish second in the group, while Samoa face a significant challenge in the form of England.