Defending champions Zambia off to winning start

Reuters, Saturday 8 Sep 2012

Zambia made a winning start to their defence of the African Nations Cup after captain Chris Katongo scored the only goal of their home qualifier against Uganda in Ndola on Saturday

Felix Katongo
Zambia's Felix Katongo

However, the 1-0 win puts them in something of a precarious position, with a return leg to come in Kampala next month to decide a place at the 2013 finals in South Africa.

Katongo, who has now scored in the qualifiers or finals of five successive Nations Cup tournaments, put Zambia ahead after 20 minutes.

He found the net again before halftime, but his effort was disallowed for offside.

Uganda were denied a late equaliser when Zambia goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene made a fine save from Emmanuel Okwi.

Zambia won the last Nations Cup in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon earlier this year. The Nations Cup is usually held every two years but because of a switch from every even to every odd year, it is being played again within 12 months.

Zambia and the other 15 finalists from January's tournament play just a single home and away tie to determine qualification against teams who won an earlier round of knockout matches.

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