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Al Shabiba team clinches OJA football tourney title



Al Shabiba newspaper team snatched the title of the Oman Journalists Association’s (OJA) Ramadhan football tournament after they defeated Oman Daily newspaper 3-0 in the final clash late on Tuesday at the Al Hilal team greenfield turf in Azaiba.

Murtadha al Ajmi was the star of the match as he netted two goals for Al Shabiba while Ibrahim al Lizami scored the third goal.

Oman News Agency (ONA) finished in the third place as they thrashed Oman Radio team 6-2 in the third and fourth play-off.

The champions of the tournament won the majority of the individual player awards as Anas al Ghammari from Al Shabiba team was named as the best goalkeeper. His teammate Murtadha al Ajmi grabbed the top-scorer prize with eight goals while Hasan al Mihrzi from Oman Daily team became the most valuable player. The Galfar team won the best team award in the tournament.

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At the end of the final match, chief guest Mohammed Said al Balushi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Information, presented the trophies and medals to the top winners. The ONA team players collected the bronze medals and the third place trophy while Oman Daily players received the silver medals and the second-place trophy. Al Shabiba players claimed the gold medals and the champions’ trophy of the tournament.

In the final, the game started with balanced performance from both sides to avoid receiving an early goal. Later, the head coach of Al Shabiba, Al Muhannad al Busaidy instructed his players to focus on more attacks.

The top-scorer of the tournament and Al Shabiba star Murtadha al Ajmi was the man who netted the opening goal and later he doubled his team’s lead by scoring the second goal. Ibrahim al Lizami confirmed his team’s victory by registering the third goal.

Oman Daily team tried to make a comeback through some movements of Hasan al Mihrzi and Osama al Shaqsi, but all their scoring attempts were stopped by Al Shabiba’s strong defending line besides good saves by goalkeeper Anas al Ghammari. The match ended with Al Shabiba winning 3-0.

Al Shabiba topped the group during the group stage as they managed to earn nine points from three games. They stunned Oman Daily newspaper 3-1 and then won against Galfar team 2-1 before edging Administration and Finance team of the Ministry of Information 5-3 in the concluding round of group stage. In the semifinals, they beat Oman Radio team 3-2 as the regulation time ended in a 2-2 draw.

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The chief guest congratulated Al Shabiba team for emerging as the champions.

“Congratulations to all the winners and we are very pleased to see the participation of the teams from the Ministry of Information and private media organisations. The tournament was a great opportunity for all the media people to meet in a sporting environment and to break the routine. Also, to discover the potential faces and the top technical performers in the tournament. I hope this kind of activity will continue during the whole year and not only during the holy month of Ramadhan,” Mohammed bin Said al Balushi said.

Salim al Jahwari, Vice-Chairman of OJA and head of Sports Media committee, said that the second edition of the tournament was different from the previous edition as it featured top technical performance among the participating teams. “This year’s tournament will be reviewed during the forthcoming meeting of the committee. We will study increasing the number of the teams to 16 teams in the next edition by giving an early notice to all the teams ahead of the event with sufficient time to prepare and shape the players,” he concluded.

This edition of the tournament featured participation of eight teams distributed into two groups and each group comprised four teams. The Group A comprised Oman TV, Oman News Agency, Oman Journalists Association and Oman Radio. The Group B featured the Finance and Administrative team of the Ministry of Information, Galfar Company (media team), Oman Daily newspaper and Al Shabiba newspaper. The ten days tournament was run under the organisation of OJA represented by the Sports Media Committee.

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