Burundi edged Group C leaders, Namibia 3-2 at the Benjamin Mpaka stadium in Tanzania this Tuesday in day five of the African Cup of Nations qualifiers to keep hopes of reaching the finals of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Code D’Ivoire alive.
Abedi Bigirimana opened scores in the first minute, while Bonfils-Caleb Bimenyimana and Hussein Shaban were also on target for the Swallows.
What started like a one-sided contest ended up being an edgy win for the hosts as Namibia rallied late on.
Burundi opened a 3-0 lead in the first 20 minutes but Mamelodi Sundowns’ Peter Shalulile made it 3-1 just before the break.
Wendell Rudath came off the bench to make it 3-2, but unfortunately the visitors couldn’t complete the comeback.
The game finished 3-2 in favor of Burundi, who bagged their first win of the qualifiers.
Burundi still seats third in the three-team Group, level on points with second-placed Cameroon (4points), one point behind Namibia.
Though the Swallows stand a chance of picking a ticket for the 34th edition of the tournament, they have to beat Cameroon on September 4 before heading to the Cote D’Ivoire boarding gate.
Coach Etienne Ndayiragije and his boys will have a tough job against Cameroon in Yaounde.
A win for Burundi will earn them qualification as top of group C.
Burundi hopes to participate in the 24-team tournament for the second time, making their first appearance in 2019.
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