Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Al Hilal of Sudan shared the spoils when their Total CAF Confederation Cup ended in a pulsating 1-1 draw, at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium, yesterday.
The Asanteman contingent were looking for two straight wins to top the Group with nine points, after humbling Nkana FC 3-0, a week ago at same venue.
However, the Sudanese were a delight to watch as they appeared more composed, tactical and focused on dealing with the host.
Both teams took off in fascinating with the visitors earning two corner kicks in the first five minutes but wasted them.
Kotoko accepted the challenge and nearly found the back of the net with their first corner kick but Emmanuel Gyamfi’s header went off target in the ninth minute.
Marching the reds boot-for-boot, the visitors nearly caused a stir as Mohammed Musah Eldai watched his drive missed the posts in the 14th minute to the relief of the Kotoko fans.
It looked quite nervy for the Asanteman lads as the Sudanese dominated with their inter-positional play and short passes from the 32nd minute.
Waleed Bakhet Hamid headed home a volley from Atahir El Tahir Babikir Mohammed from a goal mouth melee to put the visitors ahead.
Kotoko accepted the challenge and had the opportunity to cancel the lead but Sogne Yacouba, who capitalised on a defensive blunder, headed over the bar in the 35th minute while Emmanuel Gyamfi fired off target a golden chance two minutes later to the chagrin of the teeming supporters.
The second half saw the hosts pressing for an equalizer with Abdul Fatau Safiu grazing the woodwork and hitting the post with free kicks on the 59th and 65th minutes mark, respectively.
But, for Felix Annan, who stretched to his limit to parry the ball to corner, Waleed Bakhet Hamid would have netted the second goal for his side in the 74th minute.
When all pointed to a sad day for the Reds, a throw in saw Songne Yacouba fetch the equalizer with a powerful header in the 85th minute which goal was greeted with thunderous applause.
The goal gingered the Porcupine Warrior who pushed more men forward in search of the winner but the visitors defended to earn a point.
FROM KINGSLEY E. HOPE, KUMASI