Football: Airtel Cup-Esther nets six as La Passe crush Quincy


Renick Esther scored six goals to inspire La Digue-based La Passe to a crushing 10-0 win over Quincy in a home fixture on Saturday while St Michel travelled to Praslin and defeated LightStars 3-2. At Stad Linite on the same day, Anse Reunion edged Northern Dynamo 2-1 and on Friday Côte d’Or extended their winning streak to seven as they beat St Roch 2-1.

La Passe demolish Quincy

La Passe’s hero on Saturday was no other than former LightStars striker Renick Esther who scored six goals to inspire his team to a 10-0 demolition job on Quincy.

Esther opened the scoring in the first half and Malagasy Fagnorena made it 2-0 before half-time.
The players of coach Bruno Saindini though ran riot in the second period as Esther added five more goals for an amazing feat. Malagasy Valerie also got his name on the score-sheet as well as young Collin Bibi and former St Francis striker Yves Zialor as La Passe registered the biggest win this season as they mauled Quincy 10-0.

Northern Dynamo succumb to Anse Reunion

These two teams battled it out at Stad Linite for the runner-up berth in pool B behind runaway leaders Côte d’Or.
Anse Reunion though were the better side and threatened as early as the third minute when the impressive Malagasy, Hassan Ali, played a quick free kick to captain Roderick Rose who set up Evans Elizabeth whose shot was saved by Dynamo’s goalkeeper Jules Monnaie.

Three minutes later, Anse Reunion’s Malagasy striker Hugo Sezou controlled well a long ball before cutting it back to colleague Ali who shot narrowly wide.

Dynamo had a decent chance in the ninth minute as Jude Botsoie picked out Marcus Maria with a cross but the diminutive striker hurried his shot in a good scoring position.

A minute later, Sezou chased a long ball to out-speed the Dynamo defence but was held by Steven Côme as he bore on goal but referee Kierens Yocette failed to award a clear foul.

Anse Reunion felt bitter with the officials as twice in the 26th minute they were stopped in their strides for non-existent offside calls by assistant referee Steve Marie as they had clear chances to score.

The La Digue side continued to torment Dynamo’s defence, especially Sezou who was proving to be a thorn in their side and in the 29th minute he latched onto Ali’s pass to head for goal, but goalkeeper Monnaie, who was kept busy on Saturday, was quick off his line to block his shot.

On the half-hour mark, Dynamo stole the lead against the run of play as captain Evans Télémaque curled in a free-kick from a tight angle which somehow flew through goalkeeper Jean-Paul Ah-Kong’s legs for a 1-0 lead.

The goal rattled Anse Reunion who nearly conceded a second in the 39th minute as Malagasy Asman Todisoa played a one-two with Maria but the latter delayed his shot allowing a defender to block him.

In the 41st minute, Sezou had a great chance to level the score as he pounced onto captain Roderick Rose’s through ball but he pushed the ball too far ahead allowing goalkeeper Monnaie to cut out the danger.

The second half was again quite entertaining and in the 49th minute Dynamo captain Télémaque fired a 25m free-kick which goalkeeper Ah-Kong tipped over the crossbar.

Nine minutes later, Anse Reunion were given a lifeline as Ali released Sezou who was pulled down in the penalty area by defender Côme and referee Yocette quite rightly awarded a penalty. Captain Roderick Rose stepped up to score with a low shot to make it 1-1.

Anse Reunion were buoyed by the equaliser and on the hour mark, Ali pounced on a defensive error to fire at Monnaie who parried his shot.

In the 63rd minute, Sezou burst through as he left two defenders in this wake but was felled by Côme on the penalty edge as he conceded a free-kick but was lucky not to be sent off for a second bookable offence. Ali lined up for the free-kick and rifled it onto the foot of the post and it hit the goalkeeper allowing Elizabeth to score in an empty net to make it 2-1.

In the 72nd minute, Sezou combined with Hubert Ernesta who threaded a pass to him and he rounded goalkeeper Monnaie who pulled him down but surprisingly the official failed to award a blatant penalty much to the frustration of the striker who suffered some crude tackles and was not protected enough by the officials.

Dynamo tried to press to get a share of the points and on the stroke of full time, Maria picked up a long ball to skip past Evans Elizabeth who tripped him and it should have resulted in a clear penalty but again the officials turned a blind eye as Anse Reunion collected all three points.

St Roch beaten by Côte d’Or

Pool B leaders Côte d’Or had to dig deep to overcome a persistent St Roch side 2-1 on Friday at Stad Linite. This was a match-up between the leaders and the bottom club in this group but St Roch made life very difficult for Côte d’Or.

Côte d’Or had taken the lead through Malagasy Patrick Ramsamimanana in the 29th minute but St Roch had hit back through Nerick Athanase who levelled matters at 1-1.

The second half was quite lively as both teams tried to win the match and on the hour mark Malagasy Patrick Ramsamimanana looked suspiciously offside when he latched onto a through ball but St Roch’s goalkeeper Dan Furneau stopped him in his stride.

In the 70th minute, St Roch’s Malagasy Freddy Armand was fed by Steven Télémaque as he pounced onto a mistake by Malagasy Jean Tigana of Côte d’Or. Armand bore on goal but blazed his shot over in a decent scoring position.

St Roch though gave away a needless penalty as Marvin Pierre brought down Marlon Sophola in the 86th minute and referee Nelson Emile awarded a penalty and showed the defender a straight red card.

Malagasy Tigana stepped up to shoot past goalkeeper Furneau for a 2-1 scoreline.
Deep in injury time, Sophola had a great chance as he was picked out by Ramsamimanana but he failed to score though his team had done enough to register their seventh consecutive win in this pool.

Coach Ahmed Abdou told Sports Nation his team did not play well probably because they were conscious they had already qualified for the semifinals.  He said he was also protecting his players for the next stage of the competition.

St Michel gun down LightStars
On Praslin, defending cup winners St Michel had to win their fixture against LightStars to keep their chance of progressing to the semis while LightStars knew that a win might have eliminated St Michel from qualifying for the next stage.

However, St Michel started brightly as they were led by captain Don Anacoura who scored twice in the first half and Andy Mougal also got in on the act to make it 3-0 at half-time.

St Michel though had Marcus Labiche sent off  with a straight red card close to half-time  and this helped LightStars to fight back as they cut the deficit through Malagasy Mario Ravo from the penalty spot and minutes later Haja made it 2-3.

But LightStars also had a player sent off in the shape of their Malagasy forward Mario Ravo as St Michel held on to secure three vital points.

R. J-L.