Ghana’s Black Challenge begin 2011 CANAF on a losing note
Ghana’s Amputee Football team, The Black Challenge began their campaign in the 2011 Cup of Africa Nations for Amputee Football (CANAF) on a bad note after losing 1-2 to their Sierra Leone counterparts in the tournament’s opener on Saturday at the El-Wak Stadium, Accra.
The much talked about Black Challenge team failed to glitter as they were silenced by their Sierra Leonean counterparts in front of their teeming home fans.
Backed by an expectant crowd that will serve the envy of some Premier League Clubs, the 2007 winners tumbled when it mattered most, dampening their chances of progressing to the next round of the continental championship.
The Sierra Leoneans started the game on a high note and their efforts paid off on six minutes when Dondor Marrah blasted home from close range with a shot that left Ghana goalie John Mensah Badu sprawling in vain.
Hosts Ghana were dealt a major blow few minutes later when Kelvin Asare sustained an injury and was replaced by Richard Ekwam.
The Black Challenge in an effort to redeem their image raided their opponents half in their quest for the equalizer and they succeeded in landing a penalty after the referee spotted a foul in the Senegal penalty area during a goalmouth scramble 18 minutes on.
Collins Gyamfi elected himself for the kick and easily shot past Sierra Leone goalie Sulaiman Sesay for the equaliser.
Five minutes later, Ghana were gifted with an opportunity to double the lead but Richard Arthur’s effort flew across the face of goal to the relief of the Sierra Leoneans.
The Ghanaians resumed the second half purposeful and Hamza Mohammed nearly put them up but his bicycle kick missed target narrowly.
On 39 minutes, substitute Mohamed Bangura capitalized on a loss of concentration by the Ghanaian defence to slam home the match winner to give his side the maximum points.
The match was heralded by the opening ceremony, which was characterized by rich cultural display and also musical performance by Eduwoji of Yenko Nkoaa fame and with the presence of the Minister of Youth and Sport, Clement Humado and other sports enthusiasts.