UNLESS you are a beekeeper equipped with a suit designed to offer complete protection from stings, you are probably right to be at least a little scared of bees but this is not for football players.
A swarm of bees attacked players and match official during the Azam Sports Federation Cup (ASFC) third round clash between Young Africans and Iringa United at the Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam yesterday.
The match ended in a 4-0 win for Yanga but some players did not avoid stings.
Some frightened players took off for their dear lives, while others had to lie down to protect themselves from the painful bite and a section of fans at the stands also had some frightening moment with several running away for safety during the second half attack.
The game took almost eight minutes break before it resumed. Yanga defender Ally Sonso took a number of stings and he was to be attended by the team’s medical staff and returned to the battle field.
The incident occurred in the 52nd minute, when a swarm of bees invaded the pitch and kept hovering around for some minutes, harassing players and match officials before hearing to the stands and disappear to let the match resume.
Yanga kicked off the game determined to win and it only took them seven minutes to take the lead through skipper, Pappy Tshishimbi, who powered home with a glancing header a fine cross from Deus Kaseke, leaving goalkeeper Nelson Emmanuel helpless.
Two minute later, Yanga came again knocking at their opponent’s door and Rwandese import Patrick Sibomana doubled the lead after finishing off Cleofas Sospeter through pass inside the box.
Then, David Molinga, Sibomana, Mrisho Ngasa and Kaseke wasted several scoring chances in the first half.
However, 12 minutes before the break, towering central defender Lamine Moro added the third for Yanga, after connecting home Sibomana corner ball with a free header.
In the early minutes of the second half, Mrisho Ngasa could have added the fourth from Kaseke cross but wasted the chance and the ball rolled out, and thereafter the game stopped due to bees’ invasion.
After taking some bees’ bite, Yanga enjoyed the sweetness of honey in the 69th minute, when David Molinga netted the fourth.
He exchanged neat passes with Tshishimbi and Sibomana and the Congolese striker rounded off a defender and again rounded off goalkeeper before he coolly slotted the ball with a low feeble shot at the near post.
After yesterday’s match, Yanga is expected to jet off to Mbeya Region for two back to back Mainland Premier League matches against Mbeya City and Tanzania Prisons at Sokoine Stadium respectively.
According to the fixture, Yanga will face Mbeya City on December 24th, 2019 before winding up their Green City mission by taking on the current undefeated side in the league Tanzania Prisons on December 27th, 2019.
Thereafter, the squad will jet back to Dar es Salaam for another league tie against Biashara United at the Uhuru Stadium on December 30th, 2019.
In another game ASFC finalist Lipuli FC thrashed Dar City 4-0 at the Samora Stadium in Iringa, while Mbeya’s Tukuyu Stars stun Singida United with a 4-3 win.
Gwambina FC beat Mbeya kwanza 3-0, while Kagera Sugar thrashed Rufiji United 4-1 to cruise into the next stage.
Today, it will be an opportunity for Simba SC to test their new technical bench led by the Belgian Sven Vanderbroeck as he is expected to guide his side for the first time against Arusha United at Uhuru Stadium in the city.
It will be a good test for Vanderbroeck and his right hand man Seleman Matola to stamp a convincing victory.
For the past two seasons, Simba have struggled to make an impact in the ASFC, making an early exit.
They won the Cup way back in May 2017, after beating Mwanza’s Mbao FC 2-1 in an epic final at the Jamhuri Stadium in Dodoma.
In December 2017, Simba were bundled out by Dar es Salaam outfit Green Warriors in the third round of the tournament 4-3 via penalty shootouts, after the match had ended 1-1 in regulation time at the Azam Complex in Chamazi Dar es Salaam.
In December last year, Simba were knocked out in the third round of the tournament by Kigoma based outfit Mashujaa, following a 3-2 defeat at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam and the Msimbazi Reds will be eager to erase the past failures.