DEFENDING CHAMPIONS Rayon Sports yesterday stormed to the summit of the Turbo King Football League after beating archrivals Police 2-1 at Stade de Kigali.
The tie was a game in hand owing to Rayon’s Champions League commitments.
Police went into the game as favourites following their back-to-back victories over the blues – 2-1 in the league and a similar score line in the inaugural Ombudsman Cup.
Rayon Sports dominated proceedings in the first half with Fuadi Ndayisenga, Cedric Amissi and Meddie Kagere all coming so close to finding the back of the net.
But no team could break the deadlock in the first 45 minutes.
After recess, it was Rayon that showed more determination.
That immediately paid off when, in the 46th minute, Djamal Mwiseneza scored the opening goal off a rebounding ball following a blunder by goalie Alexis Nganza who punched a stinging Cedric Amissi shot into Mwiseneza’s path.
Luc Eymael charges used every chance to put the hosts under pressure.
In the final third, the visitors made it two courtesy of impressive Cedric Amissi, who beat an off-side trap, to beat Nganza in the 61st minute.
With ten minutes to the final whistle, Police defender Fabrice Twagizimana scored the consolation from a Donatien Tuyizere’s corner.
Then Rayon goalie Jean Luc Ndayishimiye denied former teammate Jerome Sina and Kipson Atuheire as Police attacked in numbers in the dying minutes of the game.
After the game, coach Eymael lauded his boys: “This victory sends out a strong message to cynics. The boys played a good game; I am satisfied with the result,”
But his opposite number, Sam Ssimbwa, said the turning point was the second goal, which he claimed was scored from and off-side position. “I am very disappointed with the way we have lost. Their second goal was a gift to them (from the officials). Amissi was all alone.”
He added: “We could have won this game but after conceding the first goal, then a gift, we were affected. The ground is not level,” added Ssimbwa whose side remain in sixth with 31 points.
The win lifted the champions to top of the table, tied with APR on 43 points but with a superior goal (+1) difference over the military side.