Uganda have registered a healthy 3-0 victory over Burundi in the African Nations Championship (Chan) qualifier at Intwari Stadium on Saturday.
Vianney Ssekajjugo, Mike Mutyaba and Mustafa Kizza are the players who handed The Cranes the vital away goals which would probably lessen their work during the return match.
Uganda were the first team to get an open chance in the fifth minute when Mike Mutyaba's free-kick went inches wide as the visitors started on an attacking note.
Fahad Bayo was denied by goalkeeper Blanchard Ngasonziza in the 11th minute as the Ugandan forward was put through on goal by Allan Okello but the keeper did well to read and block the striker before he pulled the trigger.
The Cranes got the opening goal in the 13th minute through Vianney Ssekajjugo's effort. The lead was somewhat deserved as the visitors looked the more settled side inside the first quarter of the match.
Bayo was denied again by the Burundian custodian in the 29th minute with Uganda all but chasing for the second goal. The Swallows had to make the first change as Cedric Mavugo replaced Raoul Vyamungu in the 39th minute with the Cranes' attacks increasing each minute.
Mutyaba scored Uganda's second goal in the 83rd minute while Mustafa Kizza added the third in the 88th minute.
The second leg is expected to be played in October. The 15 winners of this final round of qualification will join hosts Cameroon for the tournament set to be staged between January and February 2020.
Burundi XI: Blanchard Ngasonziza, Bayizere Olivier, Faustin Ndikumana, Lewis Marerimana, Issa Hubbert, Iddy Muselemu, Benjamin Gasongo, Raoul Vyamungu, Therence Rukundo, Landry Ndikumana,
Subs: Abdoul Amini, Oneswe Rukundo, Emmanuel Harerimana, Eric Ndzeye, Cedric Mavugo, Abeid Bigirimana, Cedric Urasenga.
Uganda XI: Charles Lukwago (GK), Paul Willa, Mustafa Kizza, John Revita, Halid Lwaliwa (Captain), Nicholas Kasozi, Muzamir Mutyaba, Allan Okello, Shafiq Kagimu, Fahad Bayo, Vianney Ssekajjugo,
Subs: James Alitho (GK), Paul Patrick Mbowa, Bright Anukani, Mustafa Mujuzi, Yusuf Ssozi, Dan Muzeyi Sserunkuma, Mike Mutyaba.