Queens keep alive Ghana’s hope


Elizabeth Addo (middle) is challenged by Egyptian defender, Nevin Gamal, while Ghana’s Kobblah (2) and Egyptian Salwa Mansour (14) look on Photo: Ebo Gorman

THE Black Queens of Ghana recorded a 3-0 victory to edge out the Lady Pharaohs of Egypt from qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games yesterday at the Accra Sports Stadium.

Goals from Portia Boakye, Jane Ayieyam and Elizabeth Addo ensured that the Queens progressed   to the next stage of the qualifiers via a 4-1 aggregate win after a first leg one all drawn encounter in Cairo last week.

After a barren first half, the Queens resumed the second session on an impressive note, sustaining the pressure on the visitors and it took them only five minutes to break the deadlock.

Boakye received a pass in midfield, raced into the Egyptian area and found her deceptive cross slip through the hands of the Egyptian goalie, Maha El Demerdesh.

It provided a relief for the Queens who appeared lackadaisical and very lethargic in front of goal with the fans becoming patient at times.

The Egyptians recoiled from their shells, attempting to put pressure on the Ghanaians but always lacked the numbers in the Queens’ third of the field, providing very little test for Patricia Mantey in goal for the Queens.

Jane Ayieyam doubled the lead in the 83rd minute with a swift volley that followed a spill by Egyptian goalie, El Demerdesh of Agnes Aduako’s goal bound strike.

Four minutes later, Elizabeth Addo increased the tally with a splendid header that brought the fans to their feet.

It started with an attack on the right by overlapping defender, Hillia Kobblah, who centered for Juliet Acheampong in a ‘two-woman’ move. Acheampong released the ball back to the enterprising Kobblah who controlled before beautifully delivering an inch-perfect cross that was headed into the post by Addo, leaving the Egyptian goalie with no chance.

From this stage, it was clear the Lady Pharaohs had lost everything. Throughout the game, they concentrated on defense and midfield in a bid to frustrate the Queens.

With that strategy, they failed to trouble the Queens rear, but looked very much composed and tactically competent.

It may be a great afternoon for the Queens but Coach Yusif Basigi would be the first to admit that he has lots of work to do on his team if they aim to qualify for the biggest multi sports competition in the world.

By Jemima Esinam Kuatsinu

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