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African Military Cup Of Nations
by Amin George Forji
2006-12-20 08:17:49
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The competition wrapped up on December 17th when host, Cameroon outplayed their Malian counterpart winning 1-0. This year's African Military Football Cup competition, dubbed CAMFOOT 6, was the sixth of its kind organised in Africa. It was held under the auspices of the Organisation of Military Sports in Africa (OSMA), the regional branch of the International Military Sports Council, better known by its French acronym "CISM".

This year's trophy was named after one of the military veterans of the continent, Blaise Comparoé from Burkina Faso. The seven contesting countries were hosts Cameroon, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Congo Brazzaville, Mali, Guinea Conakry and Uganda. The 8th participant Libya withdrew at the very last minute, citing being unprepared.

The finals at the Yaounde Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium in Yaounde was presided over by Paul Biya of Cameroon, and watched by some 55,000 spectators, most of whom were dressed in green to cheer the national side.

The only goal of the game came in the 42nd minute, when the Cameroon captain, Ahmadou Ngomna converted a contested penalty to give Cameroon a precious one goal advantage and sending the stadium wild with joy. They almost doubled the lead three minutes later, just before the half-time when winger Francis Ambane fired wide, after outplaying the Malian goalkeeper.

Upon resumption of the second half, the Malian side seem poised to turn the tables, threatening the Cameroonian defence on three successive occasions in the 49nd, 52nd and 56th minutes. Cameroon's playmaker Francis Ambane was sent off in the 57th minute for foul play. As a result, the Cameroonian side successively played the rest of the encounter on the defensive.

While opening the competition on December 6th, Colonel Kalkaba Malboum, President of OSMA, had explained that the competition was particularly important to the African continent because uncountable number of conflicts have led people to view the military with distrust. He said the vision of the competition was to transform attitudes, with the resultant effect being that through sports, the African soldiers can better preach the gospel of peace, fraternity, friendliness, solidarity hospitality and mutual understanding.

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