Cup finals are won by special and individual brilliance, and that’s the summation of the Under-20’s victory in Gaborone after the Keagan Mumba coached side came from a goal down to beat the stubborn Angolan youngsters in what was a nerve wrecking final.
The match looked as though it would be headed for the lottery of a penalty shoot-out with the teams locked at 1-1, but Young Chipolopolo found a winner in injury-time to seal their third win in a row in this competition.
Angola deservedly took the lead on 32 minutes when Paciencia Cristovao headed a looping effort into the net as Zambia battled to get out of first gear in the game.
Ronald Kampamba then shot wide minutes into the second half as Zambia came out of the blocks quicker in the second period, and they were level on 66 minutes when Evans Kangwa netted his seventh goal of the 2011 Metropolitan COSAFA Under-20 Youth Championships.
After finding space on the right, he blasted the ball into the roof of the net from the angle.
Adriano forced a fine save from Zambian goalkeeper Moses Mapulanga late on as he showed good feet to get his shot away from the edge of the area, but minutes later it was the Zambians who scored.
Kampamba showed calmness under pressure to provide a perfect lob over Angolan keeper Francisco Lirio in the 91st minute and hand the trophy back to the jubilant Young Chipolopolo.
Kangwa was also named player of the year and now join the nationalÂ team camp on Tuesday with Sate Sate and Bruce Musakanya.
Zambia will keep the trophy after winning it three times in a row.
Meanwhile, hosts Botswana collected the bronze medal when they beat Malawi 1-0 in a hard-fought clash that ended with the Young Flames reduced to 10 men.
Botswana have shown themselves to have resilience in defense in this tournament â€“ the only two goals they have conceded in four games in the competition came in the semifinal defeat to Zambia.
They were solid at the back against Malawi again, bar some early nervous moments, and managed to nick an all-important goal themselves on 38 minutes.
Ogomoditswe Baoleni smashed the ball home after an attack that originated from the right. Malawian goalkeeper Carlington Msomali punched a cross straight into the path of the striker and he made no mistake with his finish.
Dalisto Sailesi really should have brought Malawi level in the second period, but missed an excellent chance after being set up by the lively Tony Chitsulo.
Malawi’s Kondwani Lufeyo received his marching orders four minutes into injury-time after a bad tackle on Tshwanelo Mojanaga, and the Young Flames are unable to force an equaliser to send the game to a shoot-out.