Egypt’s Wadi Degla made history by winning the first-ever group match in the maiden Women’s African Champions League after beating Malians AS Mande 3-1 in Cairo on Friday.
The tournament features eight teams from around the continent split into two groups, with the top two in each group qualifying for the semi-finals.
Wadi Degla made the perfect start on home soil when Hayam Abdelhafez was brought down inside the box by Salimata Kone inside the opening 50 seconds, and Noha Mamdouh converted the resulting penalty to net the first goal in the competition.
Fatumata Dukureh doubled the lead with a pinpoint right-footed shot into the bottom left-hand corner in the ninth minute, but AS Mande pulled a goal back just after the half-hour mark through Awa Traore.
The forward turned in a loose ball after Bassira Toure had a shot saved by Wadi Degla keeper Elham Eid.
The Malians spurned a good chance to equalise three minutes after the break when Fatoumata Doumbia blazed over the bar, and a minute later 12-time Egyptian champions Wadi Degla restored their two-goal cushion.
A long free-kick into the box was flicked over the keeper by Fatumata Dukureh and Jasmin Theresa headed in from close range.
AS Mande had more possession and created more chances in the second half, but could not find a way back into the game at the 30 June Stadium.
The second Group A clash on Friday sees Malabo Kings of Equatorial Guinea take on Ghana’s Hasaacas Ladies.
The Group B action kicks off on Saturday, with Kenyan side Vihiga Queens facing Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies of South Africa before Morocco’s AS FAR face Rivers Angels of Nigeria.