Rwanda men’s senior national team, Amavubi, thrashed Pirates of Seychelles on Thursday to pick valuable points in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 preliminary round, first leg qualifier staged at 10,000-seater Linite Stadium in Victoria.

Two goals in the space of four minutes and another in the second half helped Rwanda to a comfortable 3-0 away win over the Seychelles in their World Cup first round, first leg qualifier in Victoria on Thursday.

Muhadjiri Hakizimana opened the scoring just after the half hour mark and Yannick Mukunzi added a second in the 36th minute to put the Amavubi within touching distance of the group phase of the African qualifiers for Qatar 2022.

Meddie Kagere made sure of the biggest winning margin of the African qualifiers so far with the third goal 10 minutes from time.

Seychelles had been poorly prepared coming into the game, with Coach Jan Mak only arriving in the country on Sunday.

The 74-year-old from the Netherlands has been parachuted in to handle the Seychelles team on a two month contract after previous coach Gavin Rennie did not have his deal extended.

Hakizimana hit the woodwork not long before the opening goal, which was a well placed shot just inside the post from outside the penalty area as the Seychelles failed to clear a corner.

Rwanda kept up the pressure, with home goalkeeper Romeo Barra making a series of saves, before the second came six minutes later, also from a corner with Mukunzi unmarked at the back post and able to finish easily.

Kagere squeezed the ball home from a tight angle for the third. Rwanda host the return leg of the tie in Kigali on Tuesday and on the evidence of Thursday’s game should have little problem disposing of the Indian Ocean islanders.

After the two-legged tie against the Seychelles, Mashami will have just ten days to put together a team that will face Ethiopia for a ticket to the 2020 African Nations Championships (CHAN) finals tournament in Cameroun.

Initiated in 2009, the CHAN tournament is designed exclusively for players who feature in their domestic leagues. Rwanda, which hosted its 2016 edition, has been to the continent’s second biggest football showpiece three times in 2011, 2016 and 2018, respectively.

The Express News

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