Friday, August 17, 2012

Title hoodoo still haunts Rangers

After their 0-3 loss at Lobi Stars, the 28-year-old jinx of Enugu Rangers still hangs over them, as this season's title in the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) appears to have slipped out of their hands after they led for a long spell during the season.

But it is looking like a straight fight between Lobi and Kano Pillars with just one round of games left. Here's a wrap on Matchday 37:

Sunshine Stars 1-1 Kwara United
The Akure Gunners had to play on Sunday in order to avoid fixture pile-up. Ibrahim Ajani scored his first goal of the season for the Stars but Obiorah Christopher's strike ensured Kwara United got a point that took them to 15th place in the standings on 50 points.

Lobi Stars 3-0 Enugu Rangers
Enugu Rangers were brushed aside by Lobi 3-0. Tony Okpotu got a double and Jonah Abutu got the other as they close in on the title on 63 points while Rangers drop to third and remained on 61 points.

Sharks 2-3 Wikki Tourists
Gomo Onduku shot Sharks in front on two minutes before two goals from Ahmed Usman and Ikechukwu Okemmiri in the space of four minutes put Wikki in the lead.

Solomon Okoronkwo put Shark even but Alaba Johnson scored at the death as the Tourists got their first win on the road this term.

Jigawa Golden Stars 1-0 Enyimba
Enyimba's season was finally brought to an end at Jigawa Stars. John Chukwudi scored from the spot on 53 minutes to give his team a lifeline of escaping the drop. Enyimba miss out on winning a ticket to the continent for the second successive season.

Akwa United 0-1 Kano Pillars
Kano Pillars put themselves in a position to win their second title. Nasiru Ali scored the winner against The Promise Keepers in the 56th minute. Baba Ganaru's team are on 64 points and face Sunshine Stars in their last game of the season.

Niger Tornadoes 4-0 Dolphins
The champions, Dolphins were battered in Minna 0-4 even in the absence of leading scorer, Sibi Gwar. Lukman Mohammed scored twice and Son Hingir and Nathaniel Orji were the other goal-scorers.

But Tornadoes are still in the bottom four while Dolphins are 13 points off the title race.

Warri Wolves 1-0 3SC
A first half strike from Augustine Amutu was enough for Wolves to claim full points against 3SC. The Oluyole Warriors stay on 55 points and Wolves are four behind them.

Heartland 2-1 Gombe United

Defender Chibuzor Okonkwo converted a 20th penalty before Ifeanyi Ezengwu pulled Gombe United level 23 minutes later. But it was Philip Auta's 80th minute goal that sealed the win for the Cup holders, Heartland.

ABS FC 3-1 Kaduna United
This game looked all over inside the first 25 minutes, as ABS raced into a three-goal lead. Abdulrahman Bashir, Aminu Kadiri and Andrew Abalogu scored for ABS in this relegation six-pointer. Kaduna United captain, Emma Ambrose scored in the restart.

Both teams still has to wait till the last day to confirm their top flight status.

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