The New Times (Kigali)
8 September 2008
Posted to the web 8 September 2008
In life there is time for everything be it happiness, sadness, humidity, dryness and for the case of footballers, there is a time for form and a bit of luck and also a time when the two simply desert you as Amavubi Stars striker Bobo Bolla can testify.
Having endured a frustrating period since getting national nod, Bobo Bolla could not find a better time to break his three-year goal jinx in national team colors than what he did on Saturday evening against Mauritania in Nouakchott. To say it's the most important goal of his career wouldn't be an exaggeration. Or is it?
With the game seemingly destined for a drab goalless draw, which would have handed the hosts their first point of the 2010 World Cup/ African Nations Cup qualifying campaign, then popped up the flamboyant striker to notch his first ever competitive goal in Amavubi Stars colors with nine minutes left on the clock.
To say it was a sigh of relief for the player whose contribution to the team had come under severe scrutiny would be an understatement but who would blame him given the fact that he's on the team to score goals, something that he had not managed for a whole three years.
The Amavubi Stars needed to win Saturday's game to be on the safe side as far as progressing to the next qualifying round is concerned and after that win, one would be safer to predict that Rwanda is as good as already in the pot for the draw for the next round.
That win, the fourth for Tucak Branko's team in five fixtures took them to the top of the Group Eight table standing with 12 points, three better than second placed Morocco whose game with Ethiopia in Addis Ababa was rescheduled after football's world governing body, Fifa suspended Ethiopia because of their government's interference in the country's football federation's matters.
Before Saturday, Bobo Bolla who plays for Swedish second division side Laudkronabois had only made just two unproductive cameo appearances from the bench in the previous four qualifiers but this goal was the best thing he needed to justify air ticket fees and all the allowances that Ferwafa has spent on him all along.
Having earned his first cap under former coach Roger Palmegren, the ex-APR forward seemed to have lost his place on the team under Palmegren's successor Michael Nees for only to return under the current regime.
Yet, his return was received with mixed reactions from the fans most of whom were against it, saying the man was a waste of resources and space on the bench as they could not envisage the time he'll ever get his first goal for the team but as it's said, patience is virtue and indeed the showy striker finally found the best moment to silence his critics or at least for the time being.
With a missed penalty when Saidi Abedi Makasi wasted a great opportunity to add to his tally of three goals for the campaign and the return of Belgian-based striker Henri Munyaneza to the national team for the first time in two years after a self-imposed exile and midfielder Abdul Uwimana, who provided the killer cross that resulted in the goal, one can be excused to say Bobo has come of age, now bring on Ethiopia.
Djibouti 0-3 Malawi
Libya 1-0 Ghana
Algeria 3-2 Senegal
Mauritius 1-4 Tanzania
South Africa 0-1 Nigeria
Cape Verde 1-2 Cameroon
Kenya 1-0 Namibia
Sierra Leone 2-1 Eq. Guinea
Seychelles 1-2 Burundi
Gambia 3-0 Liberia
Mauritania 0-1 Rwanda
Burkina Faso 0-0 Tunisia
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