SAT 05 SEPTEMBER 2015, 15:30, KIGALI


Ghana edge Rwanda with late free kick

by Ameenu Shardow

Sat September 05, 17:52

Mubarak Wakaso curled in a free-kick late on to give Ghana a deserved 1-0 win over Rwanda in their 2017 AFCON qualifier.

The victory ensured the Black Stars took firm charge of Group H with six points from the available six.

It was sweet revenge for Ghana who lost to the Amavubi Stars by the same at the same venue 12 years ago to miss out on the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations.

Aside the late winner from the new Las Palmas signing, the majority talking point was about the horrendous pitch which made ball control difficult for both teams.

The ‘potato’ pitch made robbed the match of any highlight

Ghana were missing their danger man and most prolific player Asamoah Gyan who failed to win the fitness battle after suffering a knee injury in the

Head coach Avram Grant decided to start on-loan Roda JC Kerkrade striker Richmond Boakye-Yiadom in the absence of the Shanghai SIPG arrowhead.

Boakye lacked services and was later withdrawn by Solomon Asante who had a glorious opportunity to open the scoring but shockingly shot wide from inside the box.

The TP Mazembe man was invited into the box by a Jordan Ayew pass which took the Rwanda defenders out of the equation.

The Black Stars looked solid at the back and were up to the task to neutralize Ernest Sugira, Jacques Tuyisenge and Jean Claude Iranzi.

Also, Rwanda right-back Michel Rusheshangoga was able to deal with in-form Andre Ayew, who is in top form for his English Premier League side Swansea City.

The second half lacked a clear-cut pattern as the pitch made it impossible to zip the ball around.

But when Jordan Ayew was fouled close to the box with three minutes left on the clock, it put the home side on the edge.

Maybe it was a justified premonition after Wakaso stepped forward to curl in perfectly just by the side of the wall to beat

The packed stadium went dead and one could literally hear the drop of a needle.

Ghana prevailed once again with their quality as they look set to seal another qualification spot to play at next year’s finals in Gabon.

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