KAMPALA - Brian Umony's first half goal against Ethiopia narrowly helped keep Uganda clean on the sheet and doubly advance to the quarter finals of the Cecafa Tusker Challenge Cup.
The hosts' Tuesday 1-0 result on a weather-beaten Namboole stadium turf following an afternoon downpour was identical to their opening encounter against fierce tournament rivals, Kenya last Saturday.
A neat measured cut from Emmanuel Okwii landed on Umony who produced a fine finish to eventually place the 12-time champions nine points clear at the top of the Group of Death, and a guaranteed spot in the last eight.
And still, the home side had a last minute chance to make it two clear but was only short of time under the day's referee's stop-clock.
Cranes coach Bobby Williamson punched the air upon his side's victory, and later hailed his boys for a job well done despite missing goals three times under ten minutes, thanks to the work of the bar.
"We should have added them another goal," said the Scot, admitting that the playing was made difficult by the heavy turf.
Uganda Cranes' second successive victory in this year's competition kept them on course for potential defence of the title and a record 13th in the tournament's history.
Uganda beat Rwanda 3-2 last year on the soil of then-defending champions, Tanzania to raise the tally of the Cecafa titles to thundering 12 times. Kenya, the second best team, basks in the glory of five titles.
Earlier, the Harambee Stars who suffered defeat by the Cranes in their first game were buoyed with a convincing 2-0 victory over South Sudan.
Goals on either half by David Ochieng and Cliffton Miheso saw Kenya's hopes to qualify for the quarter finals rekindled in a game dominated by the second most successful side in the regional tournamanet.
Uganda next play South Sudan in the group stage, and that will be out of courtesy knowing very well they are through to the next stage.
Ethiopia, which faces off with Kenya in its next game, needs to secure a win to join Uganda in the last eight. But then, the Harambee Stars, who have a win and a loss just like their next opponents, will be looking for nothing short of victory.
Cecafa Tuesday results:
Kenya 2 (Ochieng, Miheso) South Sudan 0
Uganda 1 (Umony) Ethiopia 0