Uganda Hippos have qualified for the final of the U20 Africa Cup of Nations after thrashing Tunisia 4-1 at Stade Cheikha Ould Boïdiya in Mauritania.

A hattrick from Derrick Kakooza coupled with a strike from Richard Basangwa sent Hippos to the final match of the tournament where they will face Ghana.

Basangwa gave Hippos the lead inside five minutes with a great finish on the turn. The Vipers SC forward was at the end of Gavin Kizito’s cross, turned his man (Aziz Guesmi), and shot a low drive to beat Elias Damergy.

Richard Basangwa scores for Uganda Hippos Credit: CAF

In the 36th minute, Uganda Hippos were celebrating again. Basangwa broke on the left and set up Kakooza to double the lead with the easiest of tap-ins.

The Hippos, however, conceded from poor marking in the area barely two minutes later as Ben Lamin humoured in a rebound off Jack Komakech’s save at the near post.

Derrick Kakooza celebrates one of his goals

At the stroke of halftime, Isma Mugulusi was denied by the woodwork following a ferocious effort from a long way out and Hippos took a slim 2-1 lead into the break.

The Tunisians threw everything at Hippos early in the second half with numerous raids but five minutes in, it was Uganda celebrating again. Bobosi Byaruhanga, in acres of space, picked out Kakooza with a long ball that he headed over Damergy who was caught in no man’s land for Uganda’s third goal.

Hippos slowed down the game with composed passing the rest of the half and defended in numbers giving the North Africans no clear-cut opportunities, with Semakula clearing off the line Tunisia’s only real opportunity of the second half.

With fifteen minutes to play, Kakooza was played through by Ivan Bogere who had replaced injured Najib Yiga and completed his hattrick to all but sealed the win for Hippos.

Uganda Hippos elebrate Credit: CAF

With the game put to bed, head coach Morley Byekwaso called for a double change as Steven Sserwadda who was on a yellow made way for Ivan Eyamu while Samuel Ssenyonjo replaced Basangwa.

In Saturday’s final, Uganda will face Ghana who edged Gambia 1-0 in the other semifinal.

Uganda Hippos XI: Jack Komakech (GK), Gavin Kizito (C), Musa Ramathan, Kenneth Semakula, Aziz Kayondo, Bobsi Byaruhanga, Isma Mugulusi, Steven Sserwadda, Richard Basangwa, Najib Yiga and Derrick Kakooza

Tunisia XI: lias Imed Danergy (GK), Adam Karim Benlamie, Mootez Zaddem, Zied Berrima, Mohamed Aziz Guesmi, Abdallah Amri, Marc Martin Lamti, Chiheb Labidi, Mohamed Amine Ben Zghada, Hassan Ayari, Nabil Makni

Franklin Kaweru is the Editor in Chief of Kawowo Sports. He is an ardent basketball enthusiast.

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  1. BEautiful- Uganda HIppos making us proud -now that you are in the finals just throw everything to ghana get the trophy guys . We go we go

  2. It`s my first time to see a Ugandan team wining North african Arab team with both the Goals & possession. What a Total foot ball. God bless Uganda Hippos

  3. This is completely incredible they called us the underdogs but we are turning up to be the bigdogs #wegowego

  4. Teri kuzikiza ppaka world cup 2026 Uganda will rise to occasion of that 5Kg solid Gold

  5. Kudos Hippos!! You go in history straight……same mindset on the finals will definetely hand us the trophy.

  6. De 1978 Afcon finals rememberance bt this time is uganda to take if God wishes

  7. The Dog+Under has passed them without them seeing. 42 years is a long wait May God bring it on. That Philip Omondi grandson should bring the silverware home. I will be watching on Saturday every minute of the 90.

  8. The Under Dog has matured for life begins at forty! That Philip Omondi grandson should bring the silverware home. For God and my country.

  9. Am happy with the results so blessed and talented Ugandan Ugandans we are proud of u our boys keep it up however we not forget that Ghana has ever stolen our cake ,so it is time for them to pay back.GOD BLESS UGANDA

  10. Am seeing us thrashing Ghana 3:0 in the first 30mins courtesy of Kakooza and Basangwa, then we come and seal the deal with 2:1 in 90mins.

  11. These guys can be beaten, with the kind of game they played against Gambia, am sure we just need to pile pressure on them to disorganize their defense.

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