In what was a close, nail-biting contest, the 3rd year students from HIE overcame their 2nd year counterparts in the Annual HIE Football Challenge.
The match took place under fairly humid conditions at the Cheikh Bediya stadium on Friday, June 28th. The game began at a fast pace, in spite of the weather, as the 3rd years began to make good use of their wingers and dominate proceedings. They were able to spread the ball easily and made good use of the space available. Kalidou Sow and Bah proved a very effective midfield combination. It was therefore no surprise when they scored two goals in quick succession. The first half ended with the 3rd years very much in control.
The half-time team talk for the 2nd years clearly galvanised them into action! This was apparent when the 2nd years not only drew level with the 3rd years, but raced into a 3 – 2 lead after 10 minutes of the second half. This was due to a concerted team effort, as well as tactical changes, when their captain, Taleb, moved into a more advanced midfield position. Could the 2nd years make their possession count with more goals? It was not to be – the 3rd years responded by scoring two quick goals! The 2nd years then pulled one back to make it a tight contest at 4 – 4. It was then that the predatory, striking skills of Mohamed Lemine and Brahim Meiziz came to the fore. They combined superbly to make it 8 – 4 for the 3rd years within a relatively short period of time.
A heavy defeat looked on the cards for the 2nd years. However, a valiant rearguard action by the 2nd year defence, in particular by Mohamedin and Ahmed Salem, stopped the rot. With an incredible effort, inspired by the tenacity of their captain, Taleb, the 2nd years scored three well-taken goals to make it 8 – 7. The 3rd years showed their experience and tactical acumen by slowing the game down and keeping possession. The 2nd years were unable to add to their tally and the match ended in a narrow defeat for them.
The referee, HIE instructor, Gerry McKeown, praised both teams for their skill levels and the good spirit in which the match was played – his yellow and red cards stayed in his pocket!