ZAMBIA ended their 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualification race on a disappointing note, drawing 1-1 with the Harambee Stars of Kenya at a half-filled Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola yesterday.
This was a game of pride after both teams failed to qualify for the AfCON finals in Gabon.
The Chipolopolo were also hoping to restore their pride by winning the match ahead of next month’s 2018 Russia World Cup qualifier against Nigeria.
Both teams failed to break the deadlock in first half with Zambia enjoying a lion’s share of possession.
Zambia could have taken an early lead in fourth minute when skipper Rainford Kalaba’s thunderbolt shot outside the box was saved by Kenya goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch.
The Chipolopolo looked more coordinated with Lubambo Musonda, Cletous Chama and Kalaba exhibiting brilliant ball skills.
In the 24th minute, Zambia looked set for an opener but Musonda’s soft shot in the box was cleared by Brian Onyango.
Kalaba’s urge for a goal was again made clear in the 38th minute when his free kick shot hit the side net instead of the strategically positioned Winston Kalengo and Chama.
Zesco United danger man Jesse Were could have put Kenya ahead in the 42nd minute when his header slightly missed the post.
In second half, Kenya tightened their defence and put goalkeeper Jacob Banda to the test.