Police 31-31 APR
After winning their third successive league title, Police Handball Club have turned their focus to this year’s Carre d’As tournament slated this weekend at Kimisagara Youth Centre.
Police were crowned the champions of the 2016 National Handball League despite drawing 31-31 against their closest challengers APR in the final match of the season played on Sunday at Kimisagara Youth Centre. APR’s Viateur Murwanashyaka and Police’s Zacharie Tuyishime each scored nine goals.
The reigning champions finished the season unbeaten with 47 points from 16 games while APR, who lost to Police 19-21 in the first round match, finished second with 45 points.
“I am extremely happy that we have won this title, APR were stronger and I thank God that we managed to cope with their pressure to get a draw from the game, which ultimately helped us to retain the title,” Police assistant coach, Alphonse Udahemuka told Times Sport.
He added that, “Our aim is to win all competitions this season, therefore the focus now turns to the Carre d’ As tournament, which we also believe we can win.”
APR needed a win with a difference of three goals to end a seven-year league title drought; however, they failed and afterwards, head coach Anaclet Bagirishya criticized the match officials whom he accused of being biased against his team.
Bagirishya said: “We failed to reach our target and it is such a big disappointment, we played a good game today and we were in a position to win, but I am disappointed with the referees who denied us obvious penalties, several fouls which dispirited my players.”
Police will represent the country at next year’s African Handball Champions League. The trophy awarding ceremony will take place after the Carre d’As tournament.
Ecole Secondaire Kigoma finished third with 32 points followed by College Inyeramihigo with 28 points, Nyakabanda ended in fifth place with 25 points while University of Rwanda (UR), College of Education came in 6th position with 23 points.
New league entrants Kibogora Polytechnic finished 7th with 18 points, Ecole Secondaire Urumuri, 8th with 17 points while Groupe Schoilaire Rambura and UR-Huye Campus occupied the bottom two places with 11 and 7 points respectively.