Hosts Equatorial Guinea and DR Congo started the 8th African Women Championships (AWC) finals with victories after they defeated South Africa nicknamed Banyana Banyana and Senegal respectively in the opening matches played at Malaba Stadium on Sunday.
Equatorial Guinea ladies popularly known as Nzalang Nacional won their Group A match 1-0 at the expense of hard fighting South African. The match was played on a slippery pitch due the raining that poured few hours before kick off. Referee Therese Sagno from Guinea controlled a well attended match. Nzalang Nacional (nation's light) started aggressively and pushed for early goals but South Africa defenders under Sister Amanda thwarted their attempts. Led by their Captain Amanda Dlamini, Banyana Banyana strikers responded well but Equatorial Guinea goalie Miriam Da Silva was smart for their balls.
However, the hosts managed to find the back of the net in the 33rd minute through Gloria Okoro Chinasa who headed home a fine cross from the right flank that left South Africa goalkeeper Thokozile Mndaweni helpless.
DR Congo who had just arrived on the same day managed to silence noisy Senegal after beating them 1-0 in a second match of Group A. Senegalese finished the match minus one player after their dependable defender Mbayang Sow shown red card for deliberately handling the ball in the penalty box. Referee Aissatta from Togo ordered a spot kick in the 74th minute and defender Lucie Mengi Nona made no mistake to give her side the lone goal of the match, and more important the three points.
Next matches for Group A will be played on Wednesday whereby South Africa will take on Senegal at 2.30pm while DR Congo and Equatorial Guinea will meet in the other match at 5.30pm.