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Dorminant Orange retain African crown

Champions Telkom Orange cruised to their seventh Africa Hockey Cup of Club Championship title after thrashing Bulawayo Athletics Club (BAC) 7-0 in Saturday’s final at the Khumalo Stadium in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

The victory underlined Orange’s pedigree in the event as they will now keep the trophy after winning it for a third successive time.

The win was a  befitting honour for Orange player Betty Tioni who died early this year. Tioni scored in the team’s 2-0 win over Strathmore in the last edition of the tournament in Kampala.

Hellen Chemtai and Caroline Guchu grabbed a brace either side of half time to silence the home team. The result was never in doubt when Orange took the lead in the 10th minute through Lillian Aura who finished off Barbara Simiyu’s penalty corner.

Ten minutes later it was 2-0 as the evergreen Chemtai, who has been in brilliant form in the tourney, finished off Guchu’s cross, beating Bulawayo goalkeeper Christina Kondos at the near post.

THREE GOALS IN THREE MINUTES

The home team simply could not deal with Orange’s pace with Simiyu and Guchu pulling the strings in midfield.

The champions scored three goals in four minutes through Simiyu, Chemtai and Guchu as Orange took a 5-0 lead  going into the break.

Orange coach Jos Openda made several changes after the break bringing on Judith Apiyo and Jackline Atieno.

Kenyan international Jacqueline Mwangi continued the goal fest three minutes after the restart, sounding the boards from another Simiyu penalty corner.

The hosts had a chance at goal but Melissa Sibanda, who scored their winning goal against Strathmore in the semis, fired wide with only the keeper to beat.

WELL WORKED MOVE

Guchu put the icing on the cake with her second goal of the game finishing off a well worked move that began with nice play from the back.

Openda was delighted with his team’s performance.

“The girls fully deserve the title. This is a special victory because we promised to win it for Tioni (Betty). We have honoured her memory.”

His opposite number Neil Davidson praised his team for reaching the final but noted they had lost to an amazing team.

Strathmore finished fourth after going down 6-3 to Ghana Revenue Authority in the third place play-off.