The Mcdan La Town Park saw over thousand (1000) fans cheering Ghana’s Black Challenge on to a sweet revenge on the Moroccans in the finals of the Amputee Football in the 1st Africa Para Games in Accra on Sunday, September 10, 2023.
Having had the determination to host and win the Amputee Football and the fact that Ghana is not doing so well in the 2 other games (wheelchair tennis and wheelchair basketball), the Black Challenge came back from a goal down to beat Morocco by 2-1 to win gold medal and lift the giant trophy in style.
Goals from Hamza Mohammed late in the second half canceled the Moroccan lead and sent the match into extra time. Although the Black Challenge missed several scoring opportunities, they kept possession and created a lot more in the extra time, leaving fans on tenterhooks.
Captain of Black Challenge, Richard Attah Opentil calmly slotted in a volley from a freekick just before the first half of the extra time ended to give Ghana the lead and the scoreline they needed to cruise to that revenge, as they suffered same scoreline defeat to Morocco in the group stages.
Morocco got to the finals after coming back twice to beat Angola by 4-2 in the first semifinal. Meanwhile, Ghana, also came back from a goal down to beat Egypt in the second semifinal on Saturday, September 9, 2023.
Ghana’s sensational player Hamza Mohammed was adjudged the best player of the tournament, with Razak Siedu receiving the golden glove for being the best Goalkeeper. Ghana’s Coach Stephen Richard Obeng added to the individual won the Best Coach and received his accolade in a fashionable way. Coach Stephen told the Media, they did not take revenge.
“It is super excitement for the team and the whole of Ghana. It is not revenge, vengeance is of the Lord, we gave everything to Lord, we did our part and we came out stringer than before when we played hem in the group stage. As a technical coach, when you are down, you psyche the mind the players, ‘everybody is watching you, your parents and loved ones are watching you, you are a super star, you can make it, you have done it before. You went to Africa and were 2 goals down and you won the African Cup and now 1 goal down, you can do it’ That is how I psyched them.”
Egyptian forward Zaher Mohammed won the Goal King with 6 goals in the tournament, while Uganda was adjudged the fair play team in the other individual awards.
Egypt finished as bronze medalists after posting a 2-1 victory over Angola in the 3rd and 4th place game earlier on Sunday.
Samson Deen, President of the Africa Paralympic Committee and President of the Ghana Paralympic Committee was grateful to all stakeholders for making the tournament a success.
“I send you warm regards from the APC, we are happy and appreciate the support of all stakeholders, not forgetting all the embassies. Congrats to team Ghana for making us proud.”
The 1st African Para Games had 3 disciplines, Wheelchair Basketball, Amputee Football and Wheelchair Tennis (Olympic Qualifier) with 21 African countries participating.
By: Davis Nii Attuquaye Clottey