Memorial Shield Results
*W – DCU 0-1 Wananchi
*M – Weatherhead 3(2) – 3(3) Wananchi
Wananchi Sports Club coach Christopher Otim says that playing and winning the inaugural Memorial Shield is so important for the outfit, on and off the pitch.
On Sunday, Wananchi women’s side beat DCU 1-0 in the opening match of the one-day tournament while their (Wananchi) men’s side came from three goals down to even matters at the brink of normal time and to beat Weatherhead 3-2 on penalties to win the inaugural edition held at the National Hockey Stadium, Lugogo.
Uganda Hockey Association (UHA) invented the Memorial Shield played in memory of the fallen heroes of the discipline. The event which is played between the National League and Uganda Cup champions, for both men and women (or where the team is a double champion, the slot shall fall to the National League runners up, for this case DCU) also served as a curtain-raiser for all local competitions with the national league set to hit-off on Saturday, 19th March 2022.
For Otim, the Wananchi tactician says the idea behind the Shield is a great one because memories of fallen comrades will be kept alive.
“The Shield is very important for us because we have our players whom we lost…that’s why some of their relatives whom we invited are here,” Otim said whilst making post match remarks.
“Uganda Hockey did a good job to introduce the Shield so that we don’t forget those who have passed on. Wherever they’re may their souls rest in eternal peace,” a humbled Otim added.
In the women’s game, Norah Alum’s second quarter field goal was enough to earn the side in black victory as they aim to sweep all domestic accolades this season.
For the men’s game, the six goal thriller kept fans on their toes throughout the quarters and a roaring crowd on the stands kept the players going up to the final bend of proceedings.
Weatherhead put in high pace in the earlier stages of the game with Topher Kyamanya capitalizing on an unmarked left flank and driving a long pass into the area. Maxwell Mugisha soon scored (in the sixth minute) after Wanachi failed to clear the danger.
Weatherhead seemed like they were running away with the title as Raid Kiyemba doubled his side’s advantage. Alfred Agaba’s 27th minute penalty stroke sent Weatherhead fans into premature celebrations with their side posting a 3-0 lead half way through the game.
Wananchi who have upset Weatherhead before in such occasions refused to throw in the towel and in the 38th minute Christopher Angulu pulled one back.
Veteran player Innocent Raskara would later score Wananchi’s second goal in the 47th minute to set the fan base on song.
Youngster Jordan Achaye leveled the score with one minute to play and matters had to be settled via penalty strokes that Wananchi won 3-2 to claim the first domestic title of the 2022 season.
Wananchi Coach Otim added that it was team work that enabled the men’s side rise from their ruins to claim victory that was at the grasp of Weatherhead for almost throughout the game.
“We worked together that’s why we came from three goals down to equalize late and also win penalties…we were also humble throughout the game,” Otim noted adding that; “I’m happy that all my teams won, both men and women.”
Wananchi and other local sides will now shift focus to the league which starts this weekend at Lugogo. Otim says his sides are fired up ahead of hit-off.