APR coach hails players after pre-season tourney triumph

APR interim head coach Yves Rwasamanzi has lauded his players' fighting spirit following the win against AS Vita Club to clinch the inaugural AS Kigali pre-season tournament that climaxed on Saturday at Amahoro National Stadium.
APR captain Albert Ngabo and midfielder Yannick Mukunzi in action during the final against AS Vita Club on Saturday. / Sam Ngendahimana.
APR captain Albert Ngabo and midfielder Yannick Mukunzi in action during the final against AS Vita Club on Saturday. / Sam Ngendahimana.

Saturday

Final
APR 1-0 AS Vita Club

 

Third place
Rayon Sports 3-0 SC Kiyovu

 

APR interim head coach Yves Rwasamanzi has lauded his players’ fighting spirit following the win against AS Vita Club to clinch the inaugural AS Kigali pre-season tournament that climaxed on Saturday at Amahoro National Stadium.

 

The military side edged their Congolese opponents 1-0 in a tightly contested final – the only goal of the game came in extra time through striker Onesme Twizerimana.

APR netted the winner in the 111th minute following a swift counter attack, which the former AS Kigali striker lashed on before curling the ball past AS Vita goalkeeper Landu Makiesse, sending the whole stadium into wild celebrations.

“I congratulate my players for the way they played throughout the whole tournament, they displayed tremendous team work and discipline, which I am sure is the reason we have won this competition,” said Rwasamanzi in his post-match interview.

Rwasamanzi joined the reigning league champions as assistant coach to Gilbert ‘Yaounde’ Kanyankore, who was sacked less than two weeks into the job after the army side failed to win the East Africa Military Games football competition last month.

However, the former SC Kiyovu head coach is adamant that the military side have got the quality to win any competition.

He noted that; “APR have got the best local talents, the main issue was raising their confidence which was my first task and defeating one of the best teams on the continent like AS Vita Club is a proof that we can challenge anyone.”

On top of the trophy, APR FC walked away with a cash prize of Rwf5 million and AS Vita Club took Rwf3 million while Rayon Sports pocketed Rwf2 million for finishing third after thrashing SC Kiyovu 3-0.

APR attacking midfielder, a new signing from AS Kigali, Muhadjiri Hakizimana was voted the tournament’s best player, bagging Rwf500,000 while Rayon Sport’ Malian striker Moussa Camara bagged the top scorer’s accolade with five goals, pocketing Rwf300,000.

The ten-day tournament that started on September 6, attracted eight clubs that included organisers AS Kigali, SC Kiyovu, Rayon Sports, APR, Sunrise FC and Police FC from Rwanda plus AS Vita Club and Dauphins Noir from DR Congo.

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