Tanzania 1-1 Zimbabwe: Mbwana Samatta rescues Taifa Stars

The 26-year-old came off the bench to help the Taifa Stars avoid defeat in a warm-up game against the Warriors

Mbwana Samatta scored to help Tanzania to a 1-1 draw against Zimbabwe in their final preparatory game for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) at El Sekka El Hadid Stadium on Sunday.

The Taifa Stars headed into the encounter on the back of their 1-0 loss to Egypt in their first preparatory game for the continental tournament and were aiming for a morale-boosting victory in the match.

Coach Emmanuel Amuneke rested many of the players that started the game against the North Africans, with Thomas Ulimwengu leading the attack while Vicent Philipo started in defence along with Ally Mtoni and Gadiel Michael.

Knox Mutizwa found the target for Sunday Chidzambwa’s men who played out a goalless draw with Nigeria last time out.

Amuneke introduced the Taifa Stars captain and Genk striker Samatta in the second half of the encounter and he made his presence count, scoring the only goal for his side to help them avoid defeat.

The East Africans will hope for a good outing in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, starting with their opening game against Senegal on June 23.

After their opener, the Taifa Stars will lock horns with Kenya on June 27 before wrapping up their Group C game against Algeria on July 1.

On the other hand, Zimbabwe will compete with the tournament's host nation, Egypt, DR Congo and Uganda in Group A.

The Warriors will kick off their campaign in the African showpiece against seven-time African champions, the Pharaohs on June 21.