By Fred Maingi in Nairobi
Esperance of Tunisia made full use of their homeground by defeating
the well drilled Sunshine Stars from Nigeria with a solitary goal in
the Orange CAF Champions League tie.
The result puts the Tunisia side on top of group A thus extending
their unbeaten run to 19. Esperance are seeking a second successive
African title after overcoming Wydad Casablanca of Morocco in the
final last year.
The goal that literally brought the roof down came in the 37th
minute through an own goal by Jude Ebitogwa. Esperance have nine
points with an away fixture against pointless bottom side ASO Chlef of
Algeria to come in mid-September while Sunshine finished with six
However, it was not all rosy for Etoile Sahel of Tunisia who were
disqualified by the Confederation of African Football last Monday
.Their supporters twice invaded the pitch in a home game against
Esperance, and their previous results were cancelled.
Esperance face the Group B runners-up in the semi-finals and
Sunshine the Group B winners with TP Mazembe from the Democratic
Republic of Congo and Al Ahly of Egypt assured of qualifying, but
first place is up for grabs. Mazembe can remain top of the table by
winning at Berekum Chelsea of Ghana while any other result in Accra
would allow Ahly to finish first if they defeat Zamalek in a Cairo
TP Mazembe from the Democratic Republic of Congo made headlines after
defeating Al Ahly of Egypt 2-0 at southern mining city Lubumbashi
.The result ensured them a semi final berth. Scorers for Mazembe were
Tanzanian –born Mbwana Samata on 30th minute and Mukok Kanda in the
60th minute. The win also avenged a 2-1 loss to Ahly in Cairo.
Mazembe and Ahly have 10 points with one round to go in Group B and if
the Congolese can match the Egyptians' result on match day 6 they will
win the mini-league on the head-to-head rule.
Egyptian glamour team Zamalek played to a 1-1 draw with their
Ghanaian visitors Berekum Chelsea at the Cairo Military Academy
Stadium on Saturday night in a Group B match Day 5 fixture of the 2012
Orange CAF Champions League. The draw gave Zamalek their first point
in the group while Berekum Chelsea raised their tally to 6 points.
By holding the Ghanaians to a draw Zamalek have done their Cairo
rivals Ahly a huge favour. The result guaranteed Ahly a semi final
spot as they lead the group with 10 points before their weekend game
Mohamed Ibrahim gave Zamalek the match opener after 13 minutes
before Amado Nafiu leveled for Chelsea.
The game marked the return of Egyptian fans in the stands for the
first time in seven months. Football matches in Egypt since last
February when 74 fans fell dead after riots in Port Said have been
played behind closed doors.
The draw,ironically gifted their rivals Al Ahly their semi final
ticket before they face TP Mazembe on Sunday in Lubumbashi.
The winner will pocket a whooping $1.5 million first prize and a
passport to the 2012 FIFA Club World Cup in Japan.
Victory for Mazembe eliminated surprise qualifiers Berekum Chelsea of
Ghana from the title race after they managed only a 1-1 draw away to
Zamalek of Egypt, who are doomed to finished bottom of the table.
Elsewhere, Kelechi Osunwa and Ahmed Al Basha scored two second
half goals to enable Al-Merreikh to defeat fellow Sudanese side
Al-Ahly Shandy on match day 3 of group A in 2012 Orange CAF
Osunwa scored a 56th minute opener after combining well with Mosab
Omar. Ahmed Al Basha wrapped up the three points with a late second
Merreikh have seven points, Hilal five, Ahly three and InterClube
of Angola one point after settling to a 1-1 draw with.
The second-tier Confederation Cup is contested by third place national
league finishers, national cup winners and eight clubs demoted from
the CAF Champions League after the final qualifying round, including
Merreikh and Hilal.
Meanwhile a Kenyan has been appointed to officiate CAF International match.
Mohammed Omar Abubakar has been appointed the match commissioner of
Africa U-17 qualifier between Sudan and Somali scheduled for Khartourn
on 21’ST September, 2012.
According to the fixture released by Confederation of African
Football(CAF), Aden Abdi Djamal will be the center referee while
Egueh Yacin Hassan and Mahmoud Illtireh Abdillahi all from Djibout
will be the first and second assistant referees respectively .
Sudanese Adan Ahmed will be the fourth official.
The match is significant because it shall be played one leg only due
to the current insecurity in the Al-Shabab infested Somali. Which is
why CAF chose highly competent match officials. Normally CAF matches
are played on home and away basis.
This is the second time Mohammed Omar Abubakar has been appointed
this year as a match commissioner in CAF international match. On July
28'th, 2012 the veteran sports administrator was appointed match
commissioner in Africa Youth Qualifier between South Africa and Congo
Brazaville played in Brazaville.