CAF Confederation Cup: TP Mazembe to the final !

TP Mazembe Copyright -Starafrica
TP Mazembe have qualified for the 2016 CAF Confederation Cup final after eliminating holders Etoile du Sahel in the semi-final on Sunday.

The Ravens advance to their second ever Confederation Cup final, after their maiden appearance in 2013, thanks to Roger Assale's away goal in their 1-1 first leg semi-final draw last weekend.

The second leg, played on Sunday afternoon in Lubumbashi, was a tightly contested affair but the Congo Brazzaville side managed to hold on for a crucial 0-0 draw.

Mazembe will face the winner between FUS Rabat of Morocco and MO Bejaia of Algeria, who are currently loacked at 0-0 after the first leg, with the second leg scheduled to kick-off later this evening.

Wrestling kicks back in Sudan, despite growing tensions

Wrestling lovers in Sudan can now heave a sigh of relieve as the sports kicks back, despite growing tensions.

Wrestling lovers in Sudan can now heave a sigh of relieve as the sports kicks back, despite growing tensions. Ongoing negotiations between the ruling military council and the demonstrators has heightened confidence and hope for peace in the people.

“When the crisis began with the demonstrations, people tried to avoid the sport for fear of the conflicts that might occur. But these days the government has formed the military council and now people are happy to return to the sport “, a wrestler, Altaib Deifallah said.

A sport with a growing following by both the young and old in Sudan

“People have put football aside and they come here to watch the Sudanese wrestling because it is about peace, love and fraternity. All the people present here come from all the tribes of Sudan and love the game. Wrestling has developed a lot here “, added the leader of the Sudanese Wrestling Clan, Noor Mohammed.

Besides the joy it brings its lovers, the game is also a symbol of Unity.

“I’m glad its back because it’s like a celebration in the village. It’s a very good thing”, said another wrestler, Nasir Khamis.

With the games strongly embedded in Sudan’s culture, the passion for it can only keep soaring for many years to come.

Semenya to miss Rabat Diamond League as invitation came "too late"-Agent

Double Olympic champion Semenya said on Thursday she had been denied entry into the event in Rabat in apparent violation of a ruling from Switzerland’s high court which has temporarily lifted regulati

Caster Semenya was invited on Friday to run in an 800m race in Morocco on Sunday after previously saying she had been denied the right to participate in the event but the invitation came too late for her to get there, her agent said.

Double Olympic champion Semenya said on Thursday she had been denied entry into the event in Rabat in apparent violation of a ruling from Switzerland’s high court which has temporarily lifted regulations that would require her to take medication to lower her testosterone levels in order to be allowed to race certain distances.

Speaking to Reuters by phone on Friday, her agent Jukka Harkonen said the lateness of the invitation made it impossible for Semenya to travel to Rabat in time for the race, because it was a journey of more than 20 hours from her home country South Africa.

“She’s not running,” he said. “She was invited today but that was too late.”

Semenya became the centre of heated international debate after a controversial ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

The CAS ruled that International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) regulations to limit naturally-occurring testosterone in female athletes with differences in sexual development (DSDs), such as Semenya, were needed to ensure fair competition between runners in events ranging from 400 metres to a mile.

The Swiss Federal Tribunal later ordered the IAAF to immediately suspend implementation of the regulations on Semenya, allowing her to compete without restriction, while she appealed against the decision.

On Thursday, Semenya said the tribunal had rejected an IAAF request to reimpose the rules but she had nevertheless had a request to race in the Rabat event denied by the Royal Moroccan Athletics Federation, with no reasons being given.

The IAAF said it had no say in who competed in Diamond League events such as the one in Rabat, to which athletes were invited by the organisers. The BBC reported on Friday that the organiser of the Rabat meeting, Alain Blondel, said Semenya had been invited.

2019 Women's World Cup: Final group fixtures of African teams

In this rolling coverage, Africanews keeps up to date with the major ongoings around the three African teams – Nigeria, South Africa and Cameroon.

The 2019 Women’s World Cup kicked off last Friday with 24 teams in the race to be crowned “queens” of the game over the month-long tournament in France.

There are 24 teams classed into six groups. Africa’s representatives are Nigeria’s Super Falcons, Banyana Banyana of South Africa and the Indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon.

The groups with African representatives are as follows:
GROUP A: France (hosts), Korea Republic, Norway, Nigeria
GROUP B: Germany, China, Spain, South Africa
GROUP E: Canada, Cameroon, New Zealand, Netherlands

In this rolling coverage, Africanews keeps up to date with the major ongoings around the three African teams.

You can read about the following major areas by scrolling below:

  • Africa’s remaining fixtures as at 15 – 06 – 2019
  • Cameroon lose to Netherlands
  • South Africa lose to China
  • Match Day: South Africa vs. China in Paris
  • Match Report: Nigeria vs. Korea in Grenoble
  • Match Report: Cameroon’s narrow loss to Canada
  • Rolling updates on African representatives
  • Summary of 8th WWC and France hosting
  • Match report: South Africa vs. Spain
  • Match report: Nigeria vs. Norway

Final fixtures for African sides

With virtually extinguished qualification chances for Cameroon’s Lionesses and South Africa’s Banyana Banyana, Nigeria’s Super Falcons remain the brightest chance of an African team progressing.

But they also have to come up against a very tough opponent in the hosts, France, who have already booked their place in the knockout rounds.

Here is the full itinerary for Africa’s next three games:

South Africa vs. Germany
Monday June 17 at Stade Oceane, Montpellier

Nigeria vs. France
Monday June 17 at Roazhon Park, Rennes

Cameroon vs. New Zealand
Thursday June 20 at Stade de la Mosson, Montpellier

Our stars to watch – have each scored so far

  • South Africa’s Chrestinah Thembi Kgatlana, reigning African Player of the Year
  • Nigeria’s Asisat Oshoala, three-time African Player of the Year
  • Cameroon’s Gabrielle Aboudi Onguene

READ MORE: All you need to know about 2019 Women’s World Cup

Cameroon fail on must-win Dutch mission

Cameroon took to the pitch on Saturday for their second game of the tournament, taking on European champions, Netherlands at the Stade du Hainaut in Valenciennes.

The Indomitable Lionesses lost their second game by three goals to one after losing their opening game to Japan.

The Dutch took the lead after which Cameroon dre“w parity through Aboudi Onguene Gabri. The teams went into the half level. But the Dutch added two goals which the Lionesses had no answers to.

They needed a win to keep their hopes of progressing to the knockout stage alive. That hope is all but shattered.

‘‘We respect the Netherlands. But that does not mean that this Saturday, we will sit back and admire their play. We will be out to show them what strengths we have,’‘ Henriette Akaba said ahead of the fixture.

Cameroon, made their debut at the World Cup in 2015, they progressed to the round of 16, after wins over Switzerland and Ecuador.

South Africa lose to China

South Africa’s hopes of progressing to the knockout stages of the World Cup were shattered by a 0-1 loss to China on Thursday.

China striker Li Ying scored the only goal in the Group B clash at the Parc des Princes, a result that ensured Germany and France progress to the second round.

‘‘They were once again magnificent. We conceded from a set-piece. We lost concentration there. We had ample opportunities,’‘ South Africa’s coach Desiree Ellis said after the game.

Debutants South Africa are now likely out of contention after two defeats, but China face a do-or-die final pool match against Spain on Monday, when they will need victory to progress given their inferior goal difference.

China had the majority of possession in the first half as the South Africans battled to keep hold of the ball, their wayward passing inviting pressure from the Asian side.

The Banyana Banyana’s final game will be against Germany in Montpellier.

Nigeria beat South Korea

The Super Falcons took a first half lead against South Korea in Grenoble when the opponents scored an own-goal thanks to Korea’s Kim Doyeon.

After resumption of the game, Nigeria looked the better side of the two teams and translated their work into a second goal with a huge effort from Asisat Oshoala, increasing the tally to two.

The team held on to the lead and ended the game with three points and a clean sheet after taking three from Norway in their first game. The Super Falcons will now look to the final fixture against France.

They became the first African side to bag three points. South Africa who play tomorrow were beaten 3 – 1 by Spain whiles Cameroon lost narrowly to Canada 1 – 0. Africa has at this stage conceded seven and score three.

Nigeria suffers injury blow

The BBC is reporting of some bad news in the Nigerian camp. Veteran defender Faith Michael has been ruled out of the rest of the tournament through injury.

The 32-year-old was stretchered off following a clash with team-mate goalkeeper Oluehi during their 3-0 opening defeat to Norway.

The Super Falcons will now have to attend to Wednesday’s make or break fixture against South Korea without her services.

Match Day: Nigeria takes on Korea after Norway loss

In the city of Grenoble’s Stade de Alpes, Nigeria’s Super Falcons will be looking to do better as they come up against Korea in their second fixture at the tournament.

The first leg drabbing of 3 – 0 at the hands of Norway makes this tie even more crucial given that their final tie will be against hosts, France.

Meanwhile, France plays Norway in NIce today with Germany Spain finishing the day’s set of games. South Africa who lost to Spain will be playing tomorrow.

Match Report: Cameroon’s narrow loss to Canada

Cameroon, Africa’s third representative at the competition failed to take a point off Canada at the Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier.

The Lionesses succumbed to a 1 – 0 defeat conceding the goal in the latter stages of the first hald.

Cameroon’s Michaela Abam described the fixture as “the day we’ve all been waiting for…to start this journey finally. We ask for all Cameroonians around the world for your continuous support as we continue on this marathon run in this tournament.”

Super Falcons of Nigeria

Nigeria, are the reigning African champions and are hoping to better their record at the Women’s World Cup and go all the way to the July 7 final.

The nine-time African champions having fallen to Norway will now have to reset their tactics in upcoming fixtures against hosts France and Korea Republic.

Banyana Banyana of South Africa

South Africa, who are featuring at the Women’s World Cup for the first time, are the rising star of the continent.

The Banyana Banyana have the reigning African player of the year, Thembi Kgatlana, who was the top-scorer at th Nations Cup (AWCON 2018) last year. The runners-up at AWCON 2018, have to face two-time champions Germany and China after the Spain pain.

Indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon

Cameroon secured their place at the World Cup by beating Mali in the third place play-off at AWCON 2018 which took place in Ghana earlier this year.

They are in Group E and are billed to slug it out with European champions Netherlands, Canada and New Zealand.

Summary

  • 1991, year first tournament held
  • 3 times, record champions USA have won
  • $30m, prize money at 2019 tournament
  • 24, number of teams at France 2019
  • 3, number of African teams at tournament
  • 9, stadiums and cities hosting matches
  • 15, record goals scored at the World Cup (by Brazil’s Marta)
  • France, hosts this year
  • Quarter-finals, highest stage reached by African team (Nigeria)

Match Report: South Africa’s bright start cut short by rampant Spain

Jennifer Hermoso netted two second-half penalties and substitute Lucia Garcia added a last-minute goal as Spain came from behind to beat South Africa 3-1 at the women’s World Cup on Saturday.

Hermoso tucked away spot-kicks in the 69th and 82nd minutes to give Spain a winning start to their Group B campaign after South Africa, in their maiden appearance at the finals, took a surprise first-half lead.

The first penalty came after a handball by South Africa captain Janine van Wyk and the second after follow through tackle by full back Nothando Vilakazi on Garcia which earned Vilakazi a second yellow card and a dismissal.

South Africa were on for a shock win after Thembi Kgatlana struck a powerful shot from the corner of the penalty area over the head of Spain goalkeeper Sandra Panos in the 25th minute.

The goal came after the South Africans had weathered Spain’s early dominance with desperate defending and then began to look threatening on the counter-attack.

African Women’s Footballer of the Year Kgatlana could have made it 2-0 but fluffed a tap-in opportunity at the back post in the 57th minute, not long after Hermoso had come close to an equaliser by striking the crossbar.

But Spain’s superior fitness saw them dominate the last half hour and there were other chances for a more commanding scoreline.

Garcia’s goal came from a ball straight down the middle of the pitch as she outsprinted the defence.

Match Report: African champions, Nigeria, cut to size by Norway

Ada Hegerberg was not needed as Norway kicked off their women’s World Cup Group A campaign with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Nigeria on Saturday.

Without Ballon d’Or winner Hegerberg, who quit international football in 2017 due to a dispute with her home federation, the 1995 champions relied on goals by Guro Reiten, Lisa-Marie Karlseng Utland and an own goal by Osinachi Phale to prevail.

The result put Norway in second place in Group A behind hosts France, who thrashed South Korea 4-0 on Friday in the opening game of the month-long tournament in Paris.

Reiten put Norway in front after 17 minutes when she volleyed home from a corner.

Utland doubled the tally with a powerful shot from close range after being set up by Reiten in the 34th.

Three minutes later, three-times African champions Nigeria were completely overwhelmed as Ohale deflected Isabell Herlovsen’s cross into her own goal.

Norway next face France in Nice on Wednesday while Nigeria take on South Korea in Grenoble the same day.

Nigeria has a 'good chance' to win AFCON 2019: Obi Mikel

Obi Mikel won his first Africa Cup winners’ medal six years ago in South Africa after finishing third in 2006 and 2010.

Nigeria’s Nation Cup winning captain Obi Mikel said he is ‘hungry’ to win again, and believes the Super Eagles have a good chance of lifting the top prize in Egypt.

Obi Mikel won his first Africa Cup winners’ medal six years ago in South Africa after finishing third in 2006 and 2010.

In Egypt, he will lead a young team with the bulk of the players making their first appearance at this stage of the competition.

“I am hungry to win. I come to win. If not, what’s the point?” Mikel said.

“It will be a tough tournament, but we have quality players, we have trained well. So we have a good chance.”

Young and impressive Eagles

He has been impressed with the young team who have forged ahead after an early exit at last year’s World Cup in Russia.

“There’s a lot of young players in the team. That’s very good, that means a lot of energy in the team,” said the experienced midfielder, who was not part of the qualifying tournament for this competition after he asked to be left out.

“We have some incredibly talented young players like (Samuel) Chukwueze and Paul (Onuachu). They have to get experience and good enough the coach has given them the opportunity. Hopefully, we are in Egypt to fight because we want to do great things.”

The former Chelsea star made his Eagles debut in August 2005 against Libya, and this tournament may well be his last with the national team.

“Maybe it’s my last one,” he said. “I’m not sure yet, but at some point you have to let go. I don’t want to overstay my welcome. Let’s hope we can make it count.”

ALSO READ: Senegal tops Africa on FIFA ranking ahead of 2019 AFCON

Cricket World Cup: South Africa vs Afghanistan, a last chance to impress

South Africa, who have never won the 50-over tournament arrived for the latest edition with high hopes. They have lost in the semi-finals four times, and are ranked third, behind India.

South Africa vs Afghanistan

South Africa will on Saturday take on Afghanistan, the only team with no points at the 2019 Men’s Cricket World Cup.

The match at the Cardiff Wales Stadium offers the Proteas a last chance to salvage their chances at the tournament that they have never won.

While South Africa will go into this match as favorites, they will be hoping their batsmen who has so far underperformed can finally rise up to the occasion. The squads are as follows;

South Africa: Faf du Plessis ©, Aiden Markram, Quinton de Kock (wk), Hashim Amla, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, JP Duminy, Dwaine Pretorius, Beuran Hendricks, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Imran Tahir, Tabraiz Shamsi

Afghanistan: Gulbadin Naib ©, Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah (wk), Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan, Mujeeb ur Rahman, Ikram Ali Khil

South Africa gets 1st point

Raain gifted South Africa their first point at the World Cup as the game against West Indies was washed out, and both teams awarded a point.

The Proteas have struggled to impress in the four matches they have so far played, losing against England, Bangladesh and India.

South Africa vs India

South Africa slumped to a third straight loss at the Cricket World Cup, falling to India by six wickets on Wednesday.

Wily Indian wrist-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal took four wickets as one of the pre-tournament favourites got their Cricket World Cup campaign off to a confident start by restricting South Africa to 227 for nine at a vibrant Rose Bowl.

Chasing South Africa’s 227-9, India lost opener Shikhar Dhawan for eight and then batting mainstay Kohli for 18 with the score on 54-2 at the Rose bowl in Southampton.

Opener Rohit, however, ensured the victory ended up being a comfortable one with an unbeaten 122 as India reached their target with six wickets in hand and 15 balls to spare.

The innings mirrored South Africa’s World Cup campaign to date as their batsmen struggled to find form or fluency on wickets that were good for striking. They have lost their opening two matches to England and Bangladesh, while India were playing their first game.

Bangladesh upsets South Africa

South Africa suffered its second successive defeat at the 2019 Cricket World Cup, losing by 21 runs to Bangladesh.

Bangladesh piled up their highest one-day International total, underlining their reputation as dangerous outsiders at the tournament.

Mushfiqur and Shakib added 142 runs for the third wicket to notch up Bangladesh’s highest World Cup partnership in an aggressive batting display backed by enthusiastic support.

That meant South Africa needed to pull off the highest run chase in World Cup history, but they ended on 309 for eight and with their next game against India on Wednesday, their chances of making the semi-finals are already under threat.

The country’s former all-rounder Jacques Kallis said the Proteas cannot afford any more mistakes at the World Cup and will need to win almost all their remaining seven games if they hope to qualify for the semi-finals.

“I think you’ll need six wins, maybe five with a really good run rate, to finish in the top four,” Kallis said in a column for the International Cricket Council.

“So South Africa almost need to win every game they will play. There will be no margin for error.

The top four teams from the new round-robin format qualify for the semi-finals and defeat against India on Wednesday could also potentially affect South Africa’s net run rate, which will decide the final standings if teams are tied on points and wins.

REUTERS

Loss to England

Africa’s sole representatives at the 2019 Cricket World Cup, South Africa got off to a losing start against hosts England in the first game of the six-week tournament.

Ben Stokes top-scored with 89 as the hosts made a competitive total of 311 for eight after being sent into bat.

Jofra Archer took two early wickets and South Africa never looked likely to reach their target, bowled out in the 40th over for 207 to give World Cup favourites England the perfect start.

The Duke of Sussex addressed the crowd at The Oval, saying: “Cities will come alive across the next six weeks as World Cup fever sweeps the nation once more…I am now honoured to declare the men’s World Cup of 2019 open.”

South Africa, who have never won the 50-over tournament arrived for the latest edition with high hopes. The Proteas have lost in the semi-finals four times, and are ranked third, behind India.

“We were outplayed in all three departments. Jofra Archer took two wickets up front and Hashim Amla (injured) as well, so it was basically three down,” South Africa’s Du Plessis said.

“I thought 300 was par but there were some really good batting performances from England.”

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