Nsabimana, Hakizimana inspire APR to record 17th league title

APR won their 17th league title after beating Espoir FC 2-0 on Wednesday at Amahoro Stadium (Sam Ngendahimana)

Wednesday

Espoir         0-2       APR
Musanze     1-1       AS Kigali
Marines       2-2      Rayon Sports
Gicumbi      0-1      Etincelles
Police          3-1      Kirehe
Mukura       0-0      Bugesera
Sunrise        2-1      Miroplast
Amagaju     0-1      SC Kiyovu

Central defender Aimable Nsabimana and midfielder Muhadjiri Hakizimana were on target as APR beat Espoir FC 2-0 on Wednesday afternoon to seal a record-extending 17th league title at Amahoro National Stadium.

Nsabimana opened the scoring in the 12th minute before in-form Hakizimana doubled the lead in the 51st minute to ensure the military side clinched their seventeenth league title in just 24 years.

Times Sport captured the scenes as jubilant officials and fans celebrated the milestone.

Ljubomir Petrovic's side started the game with aggressiveness in search for an early lead and this yielded them a goal with a brilliant header after 12 minutes, thanks to a well-taken corner from former Rayon Sports winger Dominique Savio Nshuti.

The domestic football powerhouse won the title with 66 points, five ahead of first runners-up AS Kigali. The 2017 champions, Rayon Sports, finished in third place with 52 points while Etincelles completed top four with one solitude point adrift.

Last season, the Blues took the title with 67 points, an unassailable 13 points ahead of APR.

Elsewhere on Wednesday, Gicumbi joined Miroplast as the two relegated sides to second division league after a 1-0 defeat at the hands of fourth-placed Etincelles.

Despite a 1-0 win over Amagaju, SC Kiyovu finished in fifth place, just two points off the top four fence, while, Albert Joel Mphande’s Police FC settled for a sixth spot with 48 points.

On the other hand, a goalless stalemate between Bugesera and Mukura was enough to keep the later in the topflight league after a disastrous 2017/2018 campaign that saw the Huye-based side finish in the 13th place with 31 points from 30 games; 5 wins, 16 draws and 9 losses respectively.

The champions, APR, will earn a sum of Rwf 31M cash prize while Eric Nshimiyimana’s runners-up will pocket Rwf 7M. Rayon Sports and Etincelles will walk away with Rwf 4M, each.

Past winners since 2008

2018 - APR

2017 – Rayon Sports

2016 – APR

2015 – APR

2014 – APR

2013 – Rayon Sports

2012 – APR

2011 – APR

2010 – APR

2009 – Atraco (defunct)

2008 – APR

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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