Sunday, July 03, 2011

Sunshine Stars suffer back-to-back loss

Niger Premier League (NPL) leaders, Sunshine Stars, failed to pick a point for the second consecutive game when they lost to Kwara United in a Week 30 game at the Ilorin Township Stadium by 2 – 3.

It will be the first time in this season’s campaign that Gbenga Ogunbote’s side will lose two games on the bounce.

The Orange Caf Confederation Cup campaigners came into the Matchday 30 tie against Kwara United having suffered a heavy 0 – 3 loss in the hands of Gombe United on Wednesday at the Pantami Stadium in a rescheduled game.

In Ilorin on Saturday, it was Kwara United that got off to a bright start when Isiaka Olawale scored from the spot inside 30 minutes.

But that lead lasted just 10 minutes when Sunshine Stars’ Cameroonian midfielder, Medrano Tamen, justified why he was named in the Matchday 29 Team of the Week by the Premier League.

The Cameroonian got his side’s equaliser to level the game just before half time.

Sunshine Stars began the second half brightly and former Enyimba man, Atanda Sakibu, put them in front for the first time in the game to leave fans at the Ilorin stadium stunned.

With Kadiri Ikhana on his feet, Olawale, captain of the Super Sand Eagles to the last Fifa Beach World Cup qualifier for Africa, gave the home side something to cheer when he slammed home the leveller on 74 minutes.

And just as it appeared that Sunshine Stars might escape with a point to extend their lead at the top, attacking winger Anthony Okemiri came up with a goal to deny Ogunbote’s men a share of the spoils at the death.

Okemiri told that during the match his mind was pre-occupied with winning the game against Sunshine Stars.

“All I wanted for us in this game was to get the three points and it is good we got it. It is even good for me that I scored the winning goal,” the winger said.

Kwara United climb from ninth position to eighth with 46 points while Sunshine Stars remain top of the log until Dolphins face Heartland at the Dan Anyiam Stadium in Owerri on Sunday.

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