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SESDO Knockout final forced to end amid violence

Jan 6, 2020, 3:15 PM | Article By: Arfang M.S. Camara & Lamin Gibba

The 2019 Serekunda East Sports Development Organisation (SESDO) Nawettan knockout tournament final between Bantaba FC and Uprising FC was forced into a premature end following Bantaba FC defender Ablie Sanneh’s attack on the central referee for awarding a penalty to Uprising.

The game which ended in the dying minutes was played at the Serekunda East Park on Saturday.

The violence started after the referee awarded a penalty to Uprising following a handball by the Bantaba defender in the last minutes of the regulation time when the match was 1-1.

Defender Ablie Sanneh attacked the referee and push him for awarding the penalty to Uprising and said openly that there was not going to be a penalty kick. He took the ball and kick it out of the pitch.

He also attacked the referee, but PIU officials came to his rescue as some of the Bantaba fans started throwing stones at the referee and the PIU officials.

Bantaba first scored in the early 4th minute of the first half through Richard Dekey, while Uprising equalised through Omar Marong in the 53rd minute of the second half.

Uprising, who dominated most of the game, were playing with their lives after they were relegated in the Nawettan proper, knowing that winning the Knockout trophy will retain them in the next season

SESDO spokesperson expressed disappointment with the manner Bantaba and their fans reacted on Saturday, noting that this kind of behavior is totally uncalled for.

“We are disappointed in the manner the game ended because Bantaba FC is a senior team in the Serekunda East Nawettan tournament and such behavior is not expected from their fans, official and players,” he said.

He said as a committee, they will critically analyze what happened before coming with their judgement.

“We were all present during the incident and honestly, I can tell you that it is not going to look good for Banatba FC on the decision the committee will take,” he said.