May 7, 2008, 6:43 AM
Cassava Peace Veteran Football Club recorded a famous 3-2 penalty shootout success at the expense of Dutabaakoto on Saturday to clinch the first ever six-aside veteran football tournament in Lamin.
The eight-team tournament, whose ultimate aim is to bring back the veterans or retired footballers into active football, has produced some dramatic encounters, especially during this last pulsating ninety-minute encounter which failed to produce a winner.
The two sides went into the weekend’s final on the back of impressive wins over their opponents, a match considered by many as, arguably, one of the most-exciting moments of football competitions in Lamin village.
The first chance of the game fell to Dutabakooto FC when their creative forward Muhammed Tambedou Junior missed his side's best chance of the game after squandering from a close range effort few minutes into the game.
Moments later, Yahya Manneh, the brain behind the organization of the tournament, who also played an active role in his side's win during the action-packed game, could have put Cassava Peace ahead but his powerful shot was not good enough to earn him a goal.
Dutabaakoto, on the other hand, would occasionally go close to scoring through Captain Lamin Jallow, Pa Joma and Abdoulie Jatta but all their efforts were denied by an outstanding Cassava Peace defence led by rocky centre-half Ebrima Jammeh.
Jammeh however was the hero of the final as he dramatically sent his team into huge jubilation after netting the winner during the penalty shootout.
Speaking to reporters after the final whistle, the inspirational figure behind the whole initiative, Yahya Manneh, said the ultimate aim for organizing the six-aside tournament was part of his efforts at bringing the ex-footballers back in action given the fact that football is an endeavour that can bring back veterans together to strengthen the cordial relations that exist among them.
Manneh, who continues to play important roles in raising the standard of sports, particularly football, in
He also vowed to continue to organize the tournament at least every six months as long as he has the ability to carry on with it.
He also heaped words of praises on Bakary Bojang, president of KGH Sports, for his “valuable role in sponsoring” the tournament.
The winners were awarded a giant trophy and a cash prize of D1,000 while the runners-up received a consolation prize of D500.