Amavubi fail to sting Burundi

RWANDA U-23 football team was held to a goalless draw by a determined Burundi side in a friendly match yesterday at the Kigali Regional Stadium.
Amavubi defender Emery Bayisenge (L) blocks Burundi's Amiss Cedric during yesterday's 1-1 draw between Rwanda U-23 and Burundi U-23 at Kigali Regional Stadium. (Timothy Kisambira)
Amavubi defender Emery Bayisenge (L) blocks Burundi's Amiss Cedric during yesterday's 1-1 draw between Rwanda U-23 and Burundi U-23 at Kigali Regional Stadium. (Timothy Kisambira)

Rwanda 0-0 Burundi

RWANDA U-23 football team was held to a goalless draw by a determined Burundi side in a friendly match yesterday at the Kigali Regional Stadium.

The visitors controlled play in the first half with Burundian captain Cedric Amissi creating several chances up front, but the Amavubi defense led by Captain Ismael Nshutiyamagara took charge and stopped them from finding the back of the net.

One minute into the second half, Patrick Sibomana missed a header before Emery Bayisenge’s well taken free kick, two yards from the right corner, was tapped out by Burundi’s goalkeeper Innocent Madede Mbonihankuye.

Striker Ernest Sugira squandered another chance to put Amavubi in the lead after fumbling with the ball in the penalty box as Mbonihankuye grabbed the ball immediately to deny the strike a clear goal.

In injury time, Sugira had yet another chance from a Bayisenge freekick but his effort did not amount to much in front of goal.

Amavubi head coach said, “This is the first time they are playing together at the international level and I am sure that is not the case with Burundi. I thought in the second half we were much better.”

“We had a couple of chances, we hit the bar, the goalkeeper made two outstanding saves perhaps a draw is a fair result but it is more about getting the experience for our players and we did that today (yesterday).”

Burundi head coach Willfred Rainer told Times Sport that, “We played well against a strong team and it is a good result for us. I think that we dominated play and had chances to score but it is unfortunate that we did not score but it is okay.”

The Rwanda U-23 side will face Tanzania in yet another friendly next month ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games first round of qualification against Somalia in March.

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