Bimenyimana on target as Rayon storm Conf Cup quarter-finals


Group D

Rayon Sports 1-0   Young Africans

USM Alger    2-1   Gor Mahia

RAYON Sports turned on style to beat Tanzania’s Young Africans in Kigali yesterday to become the first Rwandan football club to reach the quarter-finals of any continental competition.

The eight-time Rwanda champions sailed through to the last eight after edging the Tanzanian giants 1-0 at a fully-packed Kigali Stadium to progress to the knockout stage of CAF Confederations Cup.

Burundian forward Bonfils Caleb Bimenyimana scored the lone goal in the 19th minute after Young Africans’ defender Kevin Patrick Yondani’s failed to clear the ball a few yards outside the area.

Saddam Nyandwi provided the crucial assist.

Despite playing without some of their best players – through CAF suspensions, such as skipper Thierry Manzi and midfielder Yannick Mukunzi – Roberto Oliveira’s team came out on top and advanced to the lucrative stage.

The win took Rayon’s tally to nine points, two behind Algeria’s USM Alger, also emerged 2-1 winners in the other Group D tie against Kenyan champions Gor Mahia at Stade du 5 Juillet.

Rwanda international Jacques Tuyisenge, who’s just returning from injury, scored Gor Mahia’s consolation goal late on after Prince Ibara and Amir Sayoud had scored for the host side.

The results saw the Kenyan side bow out of the continent’s second biggest club football competition with eight points, while Young Africans (four points) went into the final group game already out of the race.

Rayon Sports needed nothing less than a win from yesterday’s encounter after left-back Eric Rutanga and Bimenyimana scored the goals that handed the Blues a vital 2-1 win away to Gor Mahia on August 19 and haul their side back into contention.

The two stars also had great chances to widen Rayon’s victory margin in Nyamirambo yesterday but were denied by the visitors' goalkeeper David Kokalanya.

Rayon Sports will know their quarter-final opponents on Monday, September 3.