Rwanda's Atraco has toppled Sudan’s El-Merrikh to win the CECAFA 2009 clubs championship trophy in Omdurman
From Sudan Radio Service, Monday, 13 July 2009 –
Atraco Win CECAFA Trophy Against El Merrikh
(Khartoum) – Rwanda's Atraco has toppled Sudan’s El-Merrikh to win the CECAFA 2009 clubs championship trophy in Omdurman. The final on Sunday was expected to be a replay of the tournament’s opening when El-Merrikh had an easy 6-1 win over Atraco but surprisingly enough the Rwandan champions changed tactics and replaced key players that helped them wrestle El-Merrikh down.Click on CECAFA label here below to read earlier news reports.
The editor of Sokar sports newspaper, Mr. Badr Eldin Bakhit, spoke to Sudan Radio Service in the stadium after the match.
[Badr Eldim Bakhit]: “I think El-Merrikh’s coach (Mr. Radan Jacknet) had said from the beginning that he does not want to pressure the players. You can see that he was just seated on the bench without saying anything. It is clear; he is more concerned about the match against El-Hilal than this competition. In the tactics you see today, the defense is supposed to be changed. Look at the midfield, there is Nasrdin Shigail, Lasana Fanie and the wings there are Bala Jabir in the right and Zuma in the left. This is a typical makeup against El-Hilal. He did not concentrate on this match; he is more concerned about the later match against Hilal.”
The Rwandan fans at the stadium expressed their surprise after their victory. Ms. Julie Karanja, a Kenyan who supports Atraco, could not hide her joy.
[Juli Karanja]: “I would just say congratulations Rwanda! They have performed miracles, it is the least expected.”
While it is jubilation and shouts of joy on the Rwandan side, thousands of El-Merrikh supporters who turned up at the stadium left disappointed, including Sudan’s businessman Jamal Al-Wali who sponsored the team in this tournament.
There were five cases of fans who fainted when the last whistle was blown.
The editor of El-Sadda sports newspaper, Mr. Muzamil Abulgasim, a die-hard supporter of El-Merrikh, who gave over twelve thousand dollars in prize money to several players, was more positive.
[Muzamil AbulGasim]: “Again we want to say that the tournament has achieved its objectives and El-Merrikh is not an exception to this because it has got this far in the groupings. This tournament has shown us the weakness and the strengths of El-Merrikh and I hope the tactical team have noted this and will use it in the champion’s league.”
TP Mazembe of the Congo took the third position in the championship after beating Mathare United of Kenya 2-0.
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Hamisi Gitagenda's lone strike gave Atraco victory over Merreikh
From BBC SPORT, Sunday, 12 July 2009:
Atraco stun Merreikh in Cecafa final
Atraco of Rwanda are the surprise winners of this year's Cecafa Club Championship.
They beat the Sudanese favourites El Merreikh 1-0 to take the trophy.
Atraco scored after just 15 minutes through the tournament's top scorer Hamisi Gitagenda.
It is a spectacular result for Atraco who have only been in existence for three years.
Atraco take home prize money worth US$ 50,000 for their efforts.
The runners-up El Merreikh earned US$ 30,000 plus the fair play trophy.
DR Congo's TP Mazembe beat Mathare United of Kenya 2-0 in the third-place play-off.
Mukulukutu Miala and Kaliyutuka Dioko were the scorers for the Congolese club.