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Toti City reigns claiming third title

Defending champion Toti City FC claimed their third National Soccer League title on Saturday with a 3-0 drubbing of Besta PNG United in the final at the Sir Ignatius Kilage Stadium in Lae.

In the third place play-off FC Morobe Wawens beat Madang FC 2-0.

The final was kicked off by Governor General Sir Bob Dadae.

The first 10 minutes of the opening half was evenly contested until striker Nigel Dabinyaba, went in for a header to put the defending champions in front 1-0.

Dabinyaba’s goal spurred his team on to mount more pressure on the young Besta pack led by captain Ernest Gwaitep.

The International Food Corporation sponsored-side repelled numerous raids and would have drawn confidence from their resilient attitude.

Gwaitep and his young chargers frustrated the defending champions by maintaining their composure and containing City’s array of talent going to the halftime break 1-0.

But the halftime break proved to be their undoing as the resumption of play for the second stanza saw hard working Matthew David scored Toti’s second goal to extend the lead to 2-0.

Captain and golden boot winner Raymond Gunemba slotted his side’s third goal to put the result beyond doubt and take their title-winning streak to three.

Toti City coach Peter Gunemba was pleased with the win.

He commended Harrison Kamake’s coached-side for being competitive throughout and keeping his players honest particularly in the first half.

He thanked the fans of both teams for turning up in numbers and making the day a memorable one.

“We’re happy to have won our third title,” Gunemba said.

“For Besta, after nine years in the competition this was their first final and they showed they deserve to be here.”

“They are future stars and they proved it today.

“The Besta boys have a long way to go but they have done well and I congratulate them and coach Harrison Kamake for bringing the team this far.

Besta captain Ernest Gwaitep said despite the loss their mood in the team was upbeat and they were proud of what they had done this season.

“We didn’t expect to make the final but we have made it through and we are thankful for all the support we got to come this far,” Gwaitep said.

“Playing against an experienced side like Toti was a big challenge but we were confident we could do well. Unfortunately, we lost focus in the second half and paid for it.”

Toti captain Raymond put the result down to his players’ faith in each other and keeping focused on the game plan.

Toti City collected K50, 000 prize money with the cup while Besta received K25, 000 as runner-up.

Wawens pocketed K15, 000 for winning the third place and Madang settled with K10, 000 for coming fourth.

The most valuable player of the season went to Emmanuel Simon who collected K 3000 and captain Gunemba received the golden boot award with K3000.


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