Black Queens Cruise To Sixth Women Championship
Ghana's Black Queens cruised to their sixth African Women Championship appearance at the expense of Cote d'Ivoire with a 3-0 victory last Saturday. The Queens, who needed only a goalless draw to book qualification to the biennial party scored twice and once respectively in each half to win the game 4-1 on aggregate.
Ghana, who would be chasing a first gold at the event to be held in Equatorial Guinea grabbed the first goal through Ama Saabi who proved the most mobile and improved player throughout the game.
Saabi, who had earlier won a corner from overlapping, connected home skipper Adjoa Bayor's kick with a fine drive just outside the penalty box with 23 minutes of play.
The team began gelling after the goal and appeared near to score another goal as the game progressed. They were to score again seven minutes later through Anita Amankwaah who had been recalled from suspension for this game.
Amankwaah profited from a defensive blunder against the run of play in a move orchestrated by Gloria Oforiwaa to put the host on the ascendancy.
With qualification within reach, Ghana seemed settled for the first time and carried the game to the Ivorians whose amazing physic and skill portrayed them as a team to watch in the not too distant future.
Both teams appeared charged from recess but it was the Queens, rated second best in Africa who struck again through creative Florence Okoe only five minutes into the half.
Advancing Okoe took a one-time shot outside the penalty area after a Queens' invasion that drew Bayor, Amankwah and Diana Ankomah into the frail. The tempo of the game fell after the goal with neither team threatening to make a difference in the score line.