Thriller in Accra … As Hearts-Aduana battle 3-3

An action scene in the Hearts-Aduana game. Photo: Seth Osabukle

An action scene in the Hearts-Aduana game. Photo: Seth Osabukle

Accra Hearts of Oak’s valiant bid to clinch their 21st league title since 2009 was dealt a callous hook as they were held to a sweltering 3-3 draw by leaders Aduana Stars yesterday.

The Accra Sports Stadium result left the Aduana players and their tiny but vociferous supporters cart-wheeling into celebration, aware they have been handed a sparkling opportunity to savour the title for only the second time since 2010.

With 44 points now, Hearts are only left hoping Aduana slip up in their last four games to catch up.

Predictably, the afternoon lived up to its billing with the two sworn adversaries demonstrating some sweet football, keeping it taut-tight in midfield and looking for the slightest leeway to bite.

It did come on a number of occasions, but both teams lacked the initial composure and temperament to make them count.

Though Hearts were the first to carve a blistering start to the game with a 2nd minute corner-kick, Aduana were more concerned about an early opener – and got it after six minutes when striker Daniel Darkwah stole the ball from Leonard Tawiah and hammered a right-footed corker that deflected off Richard Akrofi to beat goalkeeper Ben Mensah.

The stadium slumped into silence as the vociferous voices of the small group of Aduana supporters tore through the clouds covering the Accra stadium.

However, the Aduana celebration lasted for only six minutes.

Skipper Thomas Abbey scampered down the left corner and petered over a cross that created trouble in the Aduana area for Winful Cobbinah to finish off with a cheeky left foot.

The equaliser brought the best out of Hearts. But it did not last long. And, before one could say Jack, Aduana’s dangerman, David Sassraku had restored the lead after outmuscling his markers, including Robin Gnagne to poke a powerful grounder past goalkeeper Mensah.

This time, the 24th minute stunning lead by the visitors struck the stadium into deeper slumber as their intricate passing game zig-zagged across the field like a bolt of  lightning.

Hearts returned from the break looking like a bunch of famishly-infuriated hyenas after their prey and deservedly snatched the equaliser through skipper Abbey whose supremely crafted 55th minute goal had a touch of class.

With his back against the Aduana goal area, he leapt to a long majestic control with the chest, beat his markers – Wahab Adams and Emmanuel Akuoku, before finishing calmly with the left.

But just as Hearts were pushing for the winner, Aduana pulled another magic in the 32nd minute when Nathaniel Asamoah took advantage of a sleeping Hearts rear to squeeze the ball into the far corner.

On a day that appeared to have been designed for goals, Kwame Kizito popped up six minutes later to head home the redeemer for an energy-sapping 3-3 draw that raised a lot of eyebrows on Referee Prince Amoah’s performance.

Truth is, he was harsh on the home team, denying Hearts a glaring penalty in the dying moments of the game when Abbey was strongly pushed down.

By John Vigah

 

 

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