Ikpeazu Pre Season tournament: A&A off to a winning start
By Sab Osuji
=Gov Ikpeazu Preseason Tournament=Comets go down fighting in opening thriller amidst low turn out
Israel Emmanuel goes into history as the player to ruffle home the first goal in the 2020 Governor Okezie Ikpeazu preseason football tournament taking place inside the magnificent astro-turf Enyimba Stadium in Aba, Abia State, Orient Sports reports.
A&A enjoyed large possession, bossing their hosts for a long spell. It was no surprise when they soared high in front with 26 minutes into play.
Despite a second half rally to draw level by the coach Bethel Orji charges, it was the eventual winners who doubled their lead with 14 minutes before the final whistle.
That was not the only talking point of goal. His 26th minute effort set his side, A&A FC from Always Ibom State to down Abia Comets FC, Umuahia, a second tier Nigeria National League, NNL, side 2-0 in the opening match of the tournament on Sunday.
In strict adherence of the Covid-19 safety protocol, organisers shut the gates of the Enyimba Stadium to the consternation of Aba football freaks.
Only players and officials of the competing 10 clubs, members of the organising committee, a few dignitaries and handful of sports journalists are allowed entrance into the tournament venue.
“Don’t you realize that here is the venue for Enyimba continental matches and anything we do here is being monitored by CAF”, Hyacinth Ezindu, an organising committee member explained.
Former Super Eagles captain and towering defender, Uche ‘Gentle Giant’ Okechukwu’s academy team, Abia Greater Tomorrow filed onto the turf against Nigeria Professional Football League NPFL title holders, Plateau United, in the second match of the opening fixtures.
But the hugely experienced league side managed to grind out a 1-0 win following a 23 minute goal.
That then makes way for the third game of the day and it was between Enyimba and Cynosure FC of Abakaliki.
Below is the comprehensive fixture of the six-day tournament
Enyimba FC, AbaCynosure FC, AbakilikiA&A FC, CalabarAbia Comets, UmuahiaJewel FC, Aba
Abia Warriors FC, UmuahiaPlateau Utd, JosFlight FC, GbokoNgwa Utd, AbaAbia Greater Tomorrow, Aba
1. A&A vs Comets (10am)2. Flight FC vs Abia Warriors (12 noon)3. Plateau Utd vs Abia Greater Tomorrow (2pm)4. Enyimba Vs Cynosure (4pm)
16/11/20205. Jewel vs Enyimba (10am)6. Ngwa vs Flight (12 noon)7. Cynosure vs A&A (2pm)8. Abia Warriors Vs Plateau Utd (4pm)
17/11/20209. Abia Greater Tomorrow vs Abia Warriors (10am)10. Plateau Utd vs Ngwa Utd (12 noon)11. A &A vs Jewel (2pm)Abia Comets Vs Cynosure (4pm)
18/11/202012. Ngwa vs Abia Greater Tomorrow (10am)13. Enyimba Vs A&A (12 noon)14. Jewel Vs Comets (2pm)15. Flight Vs Plateau utd (4pm)
19/11/202016. Abia Warriors Vs Ngwa Utd (10am)17. Cynosure Vs Jewel (12 noon)18. Abia Greater Tomorrow Vs Flight (2pm)19. Comets Vs Enyimba (4pm)
Semi Finals (20/11/2020)
20. Winner A vs Runners Up B21. Winner B vs Runners Up A
Finals (21/11/2020)Winner 20 vs Winner 21