After nine rounds of stiff monthly competitions that kicked off at the start of the year, the Corporate League season for the year 2023 shall come to an end with a final round slated for November 26th 2023.
Last Sunday, October 29th, had the penultimate round of the monthly competition held at the Makerere University Business School playgrounds in Nakawa, with over forty (40) corporate entities competing at the sports bonanza.
I&M Bank Uganda, who are only in their second season of participation, picked up at the right time; just before the finale.
The bankers had the best outing of the season, as they collected a whopping 11 points, from a possible 12.
It was the kind of return they had hoped for after falling short in the eighth round.
On a soggy turf, after a heavy Saturday night downpour, moving the ball around the way I&M Bank love to play was always going to be a tall order. But they punched above their weight to implement their playing style during every game; and it worked.
“We decided, as a team, that we need to finish the season on a high. This being the second last outing, we managed to win three games, and drew one. This is a very big achievement, and the plan is to carry this momentum into the final round, and hopefully win all our games on the final day,” said Godfrey Odoch, the I&M Bank team manager.
I&M Bank opened their matchday nine account against a compact Royal Van Zanteen side that looked organised in both defence and attack. After missing out on a number of chances, I&M Bank finally got a breakthrough midway through the second half, when captain Saddam Kireme pounced on a loose ball to give them a 1-0 advantage.
They held on to their first three points of the day.
Next in line was Coca Cola, a side enjoying a purple patch, and therefore an automatic threat to every team in the league.
I&M Bank got hands on quite early, putting all the pressure on their opponents, and it paid off towards the break, as midfielder Nicholas Lubowa beat his man and shrugged off another challenge to find the back of the net.
After collecting two wins on the bounce, I&M Bank were high on confidence and more than ready for their next opponents- DHL.
This was also the game the team manager- Godfrey Odoch, chose to take matters into his own hands, by scoring the goal that made the difference. Odoch forced his way through the DHL defence and tucked his sublime finish away for a third victory of the day.
The last game of the day had I&M Bank face DTB Bank in the bankers’ derby. It served all hallmarks of a derby, with some crunching tackles, and admirable defensive play. Both sides kept it cagey, and chances were hard to come by, ending in a goalless stalemate.