Div2 playoffs: Who will earn promotion to topflight league?

Gasogi United players, who face Sorwathe on Saturday, are seen here celebrating after scoring a goal against AS Kigali in quarter-finals of the recently concluded 2019 Peace Cup tournament. Sam Ngendahimana.

Semi-finals (first-leg)

Friday

Heroes     VsEtoile de l’Est  15:30

Saturday

SorwatheVsGasogi             15:30

With the giants Intare already out of contention, it leaves the race for the second division league’s two promotion tickets among four hopefuls; Sorwathe, Gasogi United, Heroes and Etoile de l’Est.

The two teams that will reach the final, will automatically replace Kirehe and Gicumbi, who were relegated from the topflight league last month.

Here is a look at the four semi-finalists and their chance of winning and booking ticket to play in the Azam Rwanda Premier League next season.

Gasogi United

Gasogi will face Sorwathe looking to cape their stellar 2018/2019 season on a high and proceed to the final, and if they can go all the way and win the title; it will be the greatest achievement in the club’s history.

However, their road to the final looks a tricky one, but, head coach Marcel Lomami, he says, is aware of challenge ahead and confident of his youthful side after finishing the regular season as Group A leaders with 55 points from 22 matches.

Lomami joined the second division side after being disgracefully fired as Rayon Sports assistant coach last year. Gasogi reached the last four after seeing off Intare in quarter-finals.

Etoile de l’Est

Jean Paul Muhoza’s Etoile de l’Est secured their spot in the semi-finals last weekend after edging out Rubavu-based Vision JN in the last eight, and look to make a step further by landing a promotion ticket to the first division league.

The Ngoma District-based team, who face Heroes on Friday afternoon in their semi-final first leg, are winners of the 1999 second division league.

Heroes

Having brushed aside Vision FC on away goal advantage after a 2-2 aggregate score in the last eight, Jean Marie Vianney Nkeshimana’s Heroes FC have intimidating task at hand to overcome Etoile de l’Est in semis.

The decisive clash between the two sides is scheduled for July 24.

Sorwathe

Regardless of how highly Sorwathe head coach Jean de Dieu Rafiki rates his team, the odds are against the Kinihira-based side as they seek to finally reach the lower division’s final and earn promotion to the 2019/2020 premier league.

They have reached in the semi-finals four times in their last five attempts, but have never been in the final. Last weekend, Sorwathe booked their slot in the last four after humiliating former topflight league side Rwamagana City 4-1 in quarter-finals.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

 

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