Ghana got off their campaign on a winning note beating South Africa 2-0 in their Group B opener on Monday at the Caroline Faye Stadium in M’Bour.
An own goal by Thamsanqa Masiya and Benjamin Tetteh proved vital for the Black Satellites, who yet again confirmed their superiority of the Amajita, who ended the game with a man less after Aubrey Modiba was given the marching off orders early in the second half.
It was a deserving victory for Ghana who go top of the Group B with the maximum points. Mali will play Zambia in the other Group B later at the same venue.
Against the run of play, Ghana shot into the lead after eight minutes after hard-pressed South African defender Thamsanqa Masiya inadvertently connected a Prosper Kassim cross from the left into his own net.
The Black Satellites continued with their dominance and almost got the double the lead on 17 minutes. Captain Joseoh Owusu Bempah delivered a cross from the right that met the chest of lanky forward Tetteh, who chested before firing a half volley but was no problem for South Africa goalie Dumsani Msibi.
Whilst the South Africans labored in search of the of their rhythm, Ghana continued to dictate the pace. On 41 minutes, Clifford Aboagye drilled a long drive and yet again Msibi was to his side’s rescue with a fine save.
Just a minute before the break, the Satellites cemented their lead with the second goal through Tetteh, who lobbed over onrushing Msibi after Yaw Yeboah chipped to him.
The second half was a balanced game but the South Africans were dealt a blow three minutes from the break after Aubrey Modiba was sent off for a foul on Ghana defender Bempah. Egyptian referee Ibrahim Nour El Din flashed the second yellow card at Modiba for a tackle that will later take Bempah out of the game. He was replaced by Kingsley Fobi.
Despite the numerical advantage, the Ghanaians could not increase the tally against their opponents who fought tooth and nail for even a consolation which never came.
Ghana will next play Mali on Thursday, 12 March 2015 in M’Bour before facing Mali three days later also in M’Bour.
Orange Man of the Match
Michel Otoo (Ghana)