BBC Sport in Dar-es-Salaam
Tanzania hopes of playing in the Nations Cup finals for the first time since 1980 were shattered after they lost their third consecutive qualifier to Zambia at home on Saturday.
Tanzania miss out yet again
Misheck Lungu got the only goal in the 27th minute after connecting with a corner from Joseph Musonda to silence the 10,000 spectators at the National Stadium.
Tanzania put up a spirited fight and et up a golden chance in the 36th minute.
But goalkeeper Davis Phiri was up to the task of denying Mohammed Abdallah.
The Taifa Stars looked the more dangerous in the second half but failed to convert their chances thanks to poor finishing skills by the forward trio of Joseph Kaniki, Ulimboka Mwakingwe and Mohammed Abdallah.
What is killing us is a lack of
Tanzania coach Mshindo Msolla
Zambia appeared content with their lead and switched to a possession game, and consequently created no clear-cut chances in the second half.
Tanzania's coach Mshindo Msolla blamed poor preparations and a lack of friendly games for their downfall.
"It's not the players fault that we have lost," he said. " We
only trained for 10 days and what is killing us is a lack of
But his opposite number was delighted.
"I am very happy," said Patrick Phiri. "This result puts us in a good position to qualify."
Zambia Davis Phiri, Laughter Chilembe, Joseph Musonda, Vincent Mangamu, Charles Bwale, Ronald Mukoshya, Ian Bakala (Clement Mulenga), Rotson Kilambe (Francis Kombe), Gift Kampamba, Milton Tembo (Harry Milanzi), Misheck Lungu
Tanzania Juma Kabeja, Macky Maxime, Alphonso Modest, Boniface Pawasa, Victor Costa, Ulimboka Mwakingwe, Selemani
Matola (Alex Christopher), Mohammed Abdalla, Primus Kasonso (Mwanakusha Joseph), Emmanuel Gabriel (Mapunda Steven), Joseph Kaniki
Referee Tessema Kaizemelk (Ethiopia).