Queens, Banyana fight for bronze as Nigeria, Cameroun set for fitting final

 Yussif Basigi -—- Black Queens coach
Yussif Basigi -—- Black Queens coach

There couldn't have been a perfect final two scenes to wrap up the thrilling and enthralling drama that has characterised this year's Africa Women's Championship.

Today and tomorrow the final scenes will be acted with a Ghana-South Africa showdown for third place and the curtain-drawing final between hosts, Cameroun's Indomitable Lionesses and defending champions, Nigeria's Super Falcons tomorrow.

So far, the pundits have gotten their prediction about the final four right. What they couldn't figure out was how they would finish in terms of placing.

At this point, it is difficult to predict, given the stakes and the rivalry that runs deep in both games.

The scenes played out from the group stages drew different reactions with tears, joy and disappointment aplenty, but none can surpass what is likely to happen this weekend, given that the plots are thickened with revenge or repeat high on the agenda, with history in the making particularly, in the grand final.

With a third place and pride at stake, both Ghana’s Black Queens and South Africa’s Banyana Banyana will come fighting as if they were playing their opening game or the final.

Queens may have had the edge over the Bayana Bayana in previous meetings with a 6-2 record at the AWC, but in Cameroun, the South Africans have peaked steadily.

After what has been a historic hosting with unprecedented attendances particularly in Yaounde, Camerounians are hopeful of lifting the trophy for the first time as reward for all they have put in to raise the image of the AWC.

It is not just a matter of expectation, but the Indomitable Lionesses have what it takes to win it on merit. They remain the only side not to have conceded at this competition, but tomorrow, they will be up against an equally potent Falcons attack with a certain Asisat Oshoala leading.

Both sides have adapted tactics for each game they have played and this will be the final of such strategies as Nigeria's coach, Florence Omagbemi, seeks to join the history makers in the successful transition from player to coach.

In the first AWC in Abeokuta, it was Omagbemi who led the Falcons to lift the trophy against Ghana. Now, she is back to help them retain it as a coach.

Meanwhile, Enow Ngachu has supervised the Lionesses rise from fourth, third and to second place finishes. Perhaps, now will be the time to lift it too.

With the entire nation, including President Paul Biya in attendance, the Lionesses will have the impetus to roar loudest at the Falcons; how high they can soar to avoid being brought down is what form, the plot in this final scene.

Whichever way it ends, it no doubt will be perfect.