National deaf football team fails to secure spot for next year’s Deaflympics after heavy defeat in qualifiers

Thursday, September 16th, 2021 01:52 |
Yahye Bashir of Kenya is tackled by Yahia Conuta of Mali during the World Deaflympics Qualifiers at the Nyayo National Stadium yesterday. Photo/PD/PHILIP KAMAKYA

Kenya’s run for the World Deaflympics Championships in Brazil ended abruptly yesterday following their 2-4 loss to Mali in their second group stage match held at the Nyayo Stadium. 

Mali grabbed their goals through a brace from Mamadou Coulibaly, Seydou Cissoume and Moussa Dida Keita with Kenya’s goals coming from Bashir Yahye through two second half penalties.

“Overall we had a good game but the result was very disappointing despite a good fight. We started the second half brightly and got two early goals but lapses in concentration cost us the match. 

“The experience of Mali was clear but the boys should be proud of themselves.

My target is now to ensure we finish anywhere between first and fourth in the classification matches,” said Coach Ben Omukuba in a post-match interview.

In the opening half, Mali proved a handful as Mamadou Coulibaly took advantage of a defensive lapse to score from close range just moments after the match started. The quick Malians made light work of Kenyan defenders.

Kenya settled after the 10th minute but were inadequate in the final third with the visiting side’s goalkeeper Duamane Camara thwarting most of the efforts.

In the 37th minute, against the run of play, Mali scored their second goal before half time through Moussa Dida Keita’s perfect finish

The second half saw a brave Kenya come back strong with two goals in the opening nine minutes through penalties from Bashir in the 47th minute and 54th minute.

However,  Mali took the game in their stride and two goals within three minutes ensured they were clear to enter in the quarters with a derby duel against neighbors Senegal expected this Friday.

Kenya’s hopes now lie in the classification matches to be played beginning Saturday.

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