Talking Drums

The West African News Magazine


Ghana's photo finish league

Since 1960 never has a first division soccer league in Ghana been such a close finish.

With three more matches to go, the title race is a three club race involving Real Tamale United, Accra Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko, the defending champions. All the three have 22 points each and with each side determined to employ all tricks to ensure victory the championship may for the first time be decided on superior goal aggregate.

The three remaining fixtures for the three title chasers make interesting pairings. Real Tamale United have a rather easy home fixture against bottom club Vipers on September 23, then a tricky away affair against Okwahu United at Nkawkaw on September 30, and a mighty confrontation with Hearts on October 7.

Hearts face unpredictable Cornerstone in Accra this weekend; meet Vipers at Cape Coast on September 30 before their show- down with Real Tamale United on October 7.

Kotoko, on the other hand, meet their traditional friends, Great Olympics in Kumasi, then travel to Sunyani to face Bofoakwa Tano before taking on Hasaacas in Kumasi in the last match. From all indications, it looks like a repetition of the 1960 league when the title was decided on the final fixtures. In the 1960 final matches, Elevel Wise were leading with 21 points with Kotoko a point behind.

ncidentally, the two title aspirants had local derbies in the last pairing, Wise faced Hasaacas and Kotoko took on Cornerstones. Hasaacas stretched Wise to a 1-1 draw and Corners beat Kotoko 2-0 to give Wise a comfortable two points gap at the top. Will history repeat itself? Below are the tables of the two league competitions:


    HOME    AWAY


RTU     7 1 1 17 3...   8 2 3 3 6 7 22
Hearts     8 7 0 1 16 1 ...   9 3 2 4 6 9 22
Kotoko    8 4 3 1 7 3.   9 4 3 2 9 7 22
Gt. Oly    10 5 3 2 13 5...  7 2 3 2 6 7 20
Wise     8 4 3 1 11 2   9 2 4 3 5 6 19
Hasaacas    9 6 2 1 11 5   8 0 3 5 2 11 17
B.A. Utd     7 3 3 1 8 5   9 3 1 5 8 13 16
Okwahu Utd    8 6 1 1 7 2...   10 1 5 4 3 15 16
Corners     9 5 3 1 8 5   8 0 2 6 2 12 15
Tano     9 2 5 2 6 5   9 0 1 8 2 16 10
Vipers     9 3 1 5 6 10...  8 0 2 6 0 13 9

No.   TEAMS   * W D L F A Pts

1. Eleven Wise   14 10 2 2 36 16 22
2. Kotoko.....   14 10 0 4 52 24 20
3. Hearts of Oak.   14 8 1 5 38 23 17
4. Cornerstone.  14 7 16 23 19 15
5. Olympics   14 6 2 6 28 24 14
6. Hasaacas.   14 4 3 7 18 31 11
7. Dwarfs   14 3 3 8 19 36 9
8. Vipers......  14 1 2 11 18 38 6

Army team banned in Abidjan

The Ivory Coast Army soccer side has been banned for six months after serious crowd disturbances had marred a cup tie in Abidjan 11 and left the referee in hospital. Supporters invaded the pitch and attacked the referee, Celestin N'cho, after their opponents, Stella Abidjan, had equalised by scoring twice in extra time. Six club officials, all serving soldiers, have also been banned for two years by the Ivory Coast Football Federation while four players were suspended and fined.

Kano Pillars leave for Cameroon

Nigeria's representatives to this year's African Basketball Clubsides Champion- ships, the Kano Pillars, were expected to leave Lagos for their first round second leg encounter in Yaounde, Cameroon on Sunday.

Warm-up matches for Flying Eagles

Two warm-up matches have been lined up for the Flying Eagles to keep them in form for their 1985 Junior World Cup African zone elimination against the winner of the Ghana/Gambia encounter.

According to the Nigeria Football Association the first match will be the NFA match of month between Flying Eagles and DIC Bees FC of Kanduna at Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna.

Seven more join Eagles

The Nigeria Football Association (NFA), has shut its doors to players who reported late to the Green Eagles camp.

Meanwhile, seven more players have been invited by the association to fill the places of those players who failed to honour the NFA call.'

The players are Fatai Amoo of First Bank FC of Lagos, Samson Siasia of Julius Berger FC of Lagos, Bello Aguta of Mighty Jets of Jos, and Leonard Eyo of Rovers FC of Calbar.

Others are Ini Udo (Rovers, FC of Calabar), Benjamin Nzeakor of Sharks FC of Port Harcourt, and Uwen Nkono also from Sharks FC.

Shooting Stars reach

The IICC Shooting Stars of Ibadan have moved into the semi-final of the Africa Champion Clubs Cup competition.

The Shooting Stars performed the feat with a 4-1 defeat of Morocco's Maghreb Fez at the Liberty Stadium, Ibadan. They thus qualify on 5-2 goals aggregate having played 1-1 with the Moroccans in the first leg.

Felex Owolabi and Rasheed Yekini scored the first two goals in the first 20 minutes while Yekini scored one goal in each half. The man of the match was ex-Eagles skipper Segun Odegbami who had a hand in the making of three of the four goals.

Chinese stars lose in Nigeria

China's invincibility in table tennis was shattered at the Sports Hall of the Lagos National Stadium during the All-Nigeria Bournvita Open Championships when they were beaten 3-1 by Nigeria's men's team in the best of five games.

Former Commonwealth Men's Singles Champion, Atanda 'Mansa' Musa of Nigeria was the man of the final as he stunned China's leading star Wan Guohiu with a two sets to one win (21-14, 20-22, 21-12).

In the first match that was played in Kano three weeks ago, the Cameroonians were defeated 98-80 by the Pillars.

In the doubles event Musa and Edoh whipped the Chinese 21-15, 19-21, 21-14. Nigeria's team captain Sunday Edoh, however, lost to his Chinese opponent Wan Gouhu in two straight sets of 21-9, 21-15. But Musa came back in the final match to revenge this Nigerian defeat by winning in two straight sets of 21-15, 21-16 over Wan Guohiu.

Women hockey contest in Benin

The 2nd All Nigerian Women Hockey Championships take place in Benin as from December 16-22, 1984.

The week-long Championships will feature all the women champions from the nineteen states of the federation and the Nigerian armed forces.

According to the coach attached to the semi-final Nigerian Hockey Association (NHA), the competition which had to be postponed owing to sponsorship difficulties will now be held courtesy of the Bendel State Government which is sponsoring it.

The Bendel state government, according to the sources, has volunteered to take care of feeding and accommodation of all players and officials while transportation will be borne by the respective states.

The last women's championship was held in 1982 at the Ijebu-Ode Stadium, without much success owing to poor response from the states. Only two states took part in the championships that lasted for two days. They were Bauchi and Ogun states and there were two main matches between the two teams, both of which were won by the Bauchi women team.

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