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Friday, November 15, 2013

Keningau, Tawau to battle for Musa Cup

New Sabah Times

KOTA KINABALU: It will be Keningau versus Tawau in the final of the Datuk Seri Musa Haji Aman Cup Inter District Football Tournament that will be played at the Likas Stadium today. The two sides advanced into the championship decider, which is set to kick off at 3.30pm, after defeating their respective opponents in the semi-finals yesterday.

 Keningau demolished the fatigued Kinabatangan side 7-0, who only booked their ticket into the last four only hours prior to the Keningau date, while Tawau fought their way back from a goal down before nicking a slim 2-1 win over Sipitang. Keningau were leading 3-0 at half time at the Sukma Field D with their goals coming from Shamsonale Boy (29th), Eyo Matthew (35th) and Rexjeson Pitirus (42nd). After the break, they blasted another four more goals past the hapless Kinabatangan, who may blame their morning last group tie against Kota Belud for the disaster.

 The Kinabatangan-Kota Belud tie had to be played yesterday morning after their scheduled Wednesday tie was abandoned due to the unplayable field following a heavy downpour that flooded the Penampang Field B. State President’s Cupper Rexjeson scored three times after the break to make it four goals for the day. He netted his second in the 55th minute before adding his third in the 70th minute.

Eight minutes later, he scored his fourth before Frankey Ayoh sealed their easy win late on. Over at the Penampang Stadium, Tawau saw themselves trailing to a Fneckley Baris’ opener in the 29th minute, who curled a superb freekick from about 25 meters out, before clinching a hard fought win. In fact, it was Sipitang who had the best of the opening 45 minutes, and could have taken a two-goal lead, but unfortunately, despite putting the ball twice into the back of the Tawau net, one was ruled offside.

 The goal could have stood if the inexperienced Andrew Law, who was in an offside position, did not make any contact with the ball that was heading towards the goalmouth after a shot from striking partner Alfred Danial. After the break, Tawau seemed to be a completely different team, as they dictated play with Sabah Cebagoo FC’s Mohd Arifyanshah their livewire in the engine room.

 After earning the equaliser five minutes after the break, courtesy of Shahrol Hafiz, who headed the ball into an own net from an ensuing corner, the cool Arifyanshah set up the winner for M Azwan Fatah, who slotted home from close range in the 67th minute. Late on, Sipitang were presented with at least two opportunities to draw level, but unfortunately, they squandered them.

 The champions of the inaugural tournament will also walk home with the Datuk Seri Musa Haji Aman Challenge Trophy, trophy as well as medals and RM5,000 prize money, while the runners-up will settle for RM3,000, with the two losing semi-finalists receiving RM1,000 each.

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