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Players Abroad: Sandra Nabweteme’s Successful Journey To The Top

Arguably the best of her generation, a ball player, industrious, eye for the goal and team work spirit is what defines Sandra Nabweteme.

Ask anyone the best duo they have watched in Uganda women football, one of the answers will be Hasifah Nassuna and Sandra – The duo that terrorised defences when at Kawempe Muslim then.

Born to Nabukeera Angella and the late Kiwanuka Joseph, Sandra did not know any sport that made sense apart from football.

Living with her grandmother in Nateete, at only five years old she was familiar with the ball, running around with it aimlessly.

Made in heaven – Sandra and Hassifa Nassuna

Watching Bengo Steven play on villa match-days was something that excited her, who used to escort her mother a staunch Villa fan.

Primary School ushered her into the hands of Kawempe Muslim, which unearthed her to the eagerly waiting public who had seen her play as a kid.

“Kawempe Muslim groomed me as a person and as a player. I studied with almost Uganda’s smartest Students, and my coaches made me the best footballer in the country then,” Sandra remembers.

The kid from Katwe: Sandra Nabweteme in National team colours at Lugogo, Kampala.

As any career, Sandra has great moments and nightmares:

“I have many moments but only two stand out as my best. First; When we won the inaugural Fufa Women Elite league in 2015, the same year I won the FUFA Women Footballer of the year. A year later, I was given a soccer scholarship in the United States and then in 2017 our university soccer team qualified to the national tournament for the very first time in the school’s history.

“About the nightmares; (laughs sarcastically) Not making it to the East African school games group stages yet it was my last year in high school.”

The former Kawempe Muslim skipper departed for the USA for further studies at South Western Oklahoma State University in August 2016.

She is a two time FUFA Women Elite League top scorer and the 2015 FUFA Women Footballer of the Year.

Sandra did not stop flying high as she has continued to excel both on the pitch and in class, she boosts about her chemistry with teammate Akimata Rabo comparing it with what she had with Hasifah Nassuna. She credits the latter as the best she has played with.

On advice to young girls, she says:

“Not to let anyone tell them they cannot do anything in this life. They can accomplish everything that they put their hearts on for as long as they believe themselves and work hard.”

Currently, concentrating on finalizing with studies, Sandra thinks no human is limited.

Teams supported – Arsenal because of Thierry Henry and Barcelona because of Messi, sometimes man city because of Sergio Kun Aguero.

Any crush – Yes, on someone’s son.

Best women player – Mata.

Ever cried for Love – Yes.

Footballing Timeline:

2007-2009: Kampala Kids league.

2010-2016: Kawempe Muslims

  • Won 5 national post primary tournaments, top scorer and MVP.
  • Won 2012 East African games tournament, MVP.
  • Won FUFA Women Elite League in 2015 and 2016 and was the top scorer in both. MVP 2015.

2016 to present – Joins SWOSU.

  • First year: Freshman of the year 2016 and was named in the Great American conference first team. 2016 All American second team. All regional first team. Scoring 22 goals and assisted 9 times.
  • Second year; Named on the GAC first team, All regional team. Scored 13 goals and assisted 5 times.
  • Third year; Scored 21 goals and assisted 15 times. Named on the GAC all first team, All regional first team and All-American second team. Named as an Academic All-American
  • Fourth Year (2019); So far played 13 games and scored 14 goals and assisted 6 times.
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