Rwanda coach Vincent Mashami said playing at the Total African Nations Championship [CHAN], Cameroon 2020 gave his young team the best platform for exposure.

Mashami, who guided Amavubi to their second ever CHAN quarterfinals after the 2016 edition at home, said although they lost at the quarters, his young players gained a lot of exposure, match practice and also showed that they can die-a-little for their nation.

Rwanda lost 1-0 to Guinea at the Limbe Omisport Stadium on Sunday. “We are building a team ahead of many other tournaments including the AFCON qualifiers. Reaching CHAN quarterfinals has been a good platform for us,” added Mashami.

He said although he is not happy that his team is out, he is proud of the players who proved a point.

“Against Guinea we were a bit unconfident with the ball, and the loss of our skipper Jacques Tuyisenge early to injury also forced us to change certain things.

“Although we did not win, I still believe in my team. Guinea were effective enough to take their chances,” added Mashami.

Rwanda were the only team from East and Central region [CECAFA] to reach CHAN knockout stage, while Uganda and Tanzania fell short at the group stage.

Amavubi opened their campaign with a goalless draw against arch-rivals Uganda, before they held the defending champions Morocco to a 0-0 draw. They went on to defeat Togo 3-2 in the last group game to qualify for the quarterfinal, where they lost 1-0 to Guinea.

Source: CAF