By Angu Lesley
The Indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon have advanced to round three of the 2022 Women’s African cup of Nations qualifiers following their 2-0 victory in the return-leg game this Sunday at the Japoma Omnisport Stadium thanks to a 68th minute strike from substitute Ngock Yango Grace and a stoppage time set piece goal from center-back Eliane Mambolambo.
Coach Gabriel Zabo of Cameroon made a number of changes in his side’s starting XI, handing a start to Estelle Johnson in partnership with Eliane Mambo at the heart of the Central defense while Ngo Mbeleck and Fadimatou Kome came on in the Midfield and Bella Rose started upfront.
The Lionesses who picked up a narrow one-nil win on Wednesday came into this Sunday’s game knowing they needed a better performance to ice the midweek result.
The opening five minutes of the game went by without any major mouth goal action though the Cameroonians looked better.
Ajara and Bella looked lively in the opening exchanges displaying a more improved Cameroon side.
A fine 23 minutes run from Bella Rose created a difficult moment for Felicite Yakite and co at the Central African defense but they successfully dealt with it.
Ajara had the next chance for Cameroon in the 28th minute but her shot on target was parried by Beverly Mellot on goal for the visitors.
A beautiful one-two combination between Ajara and Falone Meffoumetou ended in the CAR box but a timely intervention from Christelle Demba stopped the Cameroon attacking move.
Evelyna Yapeli of the Central Africa Republic was booked in the 42nd minutes.
The game remained goalless till the 45th minutes mark and three minutes of added time didn’t change the score.
Both sides went for the break with the score goalless.
Cameroon and Central Africa Republic returned for the second segment unchanged.
Cameroon started on the front foot winning consecutive corners with the CAR backline barely.
The South Africans made the first replacement in the 56th minute bringing on Arielle Bokognako in place of Merveil Yapeli.
Five minutes later Cameroon made a trio of replacements as Yango Grace came on in place of Ngo Mbeleck while Kameni Alice replaced Kome Fatimatou and Bella Rose for Catherine Mbengono.
In her very first involvement Alice Kameni picked up a lose ball on the edge of the box but her effort went wide.
The Lionesses multiplied attacking efforts and at the 68th substitute Ngock Yango Grace pounced on a lose ball on the edge of the box to score her fourth international goal for Cameroon and give put the host ahead.
The Lionesses grew in confidence and moved the ball around in better fashion holding their two-goal aggregate lead.
Coach Zabo replaced Gabriel Aboudi Onguene with Nana Tchapchet with 12 minutes of regulation time left while for the visitors Dorcas Soumala left her place for Merline Youngai and Felicite Rachael also came on.
Nana Tchapchet also had a pair chances for Cameroon but she couldn’t hit the target.
There was another goal in the final moments plus five minutes of added time as Eliane Mambolambo scored a 25 meters set-piece thus leaving Cameroon as two-nil winners in the presence of this Sunday’s fans at the the Japoma Omnisport Stadium and 3-0 winners on aggregate.
The Lionesses advance to the next round of the qualifiers.
Cameroon starting XI against CAR: Bawou Ange, Ajara Nchout
Estelle Johnson,Aboudi Onguene,Meffoumetou Falone, Ndzana Colette
Dabda Claudia, Ngo Mbeleck, Mambolamo Eliane, Fadimatou Kome subs on Kameni Alice, Yango Grace, Catherine Mbengono,Nana Tchapchet came on.
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