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Tusker crash out of Champions League

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KIGALI, Rwanda, March 5- Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions, Tusker FC were bundled out of the CAF Champions League after losing 1-0 to Rwanda’s APR.

Burundi international Papy Faty converted a 63rd minute free-kick to hand the Rwandese military side a 1-0 aggregate victory after the sides drew 0-0 in the first leg of their preliminary round tie in Nairobi a fortnight ago.

Tusker coach, Sammy Omollo, was left to rue another failed campaign on the continental scene after the match as he rued the missed opportunities his side fashioned.

“We had trained for these situations. I had told the boys that the game was going to be decided on set-pieces but things did not go our way,” said Omollo.

“We ought to have won the game comfortably in the first half and when we did not, APR, playing cleverly, especially in their midfield, grew confident,” he added.

APR’s Dutch coach, Arnie Brandts observed that Kenyan clubs would continue suffering on the continental stage if the play in the tournaments at the beginning of their domestic season.

“They were strong in the first half but we were in control in the second. From here, I would like the boys to have the focus to do as good as they can in Africa. It’s about time we tried to reach the group stage,” Brandts continued.

Meanwhile, former winners Orlando Pirates of South Africa crashed out on Saturday to Angolan side Recreativo de Libolo.

Tipped as potential champions before the first round kicked off two weeks ago, the Johannesburg club suffered a shock 3-1 defeat in the home leg.

They fared a little better in the return leg, drawing 1-1, but left themselves with too much to do and went out 4-2 on aggregate.

Pirates were one of two former champions in action. The other was Cairo-based Zamalek, who squeezed through 2-1 on aggregate against Young Africans of Tanzania.

Ahmed ‘Mido’ Hossam, was available after a lengthy lay-off, and it was his goal just past the half hour mark which decided the tie. The teams had tied 1-1 in Dar es Salaam.

Young Africans played much of the second half with ten men after defender Abuu Ubwa was sent off.

It could have got worse as the world’s most capped international, Ahmed Hassan, had the chance to make it 2-0 for Zamalek but missed a 79th minute penalty.

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