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Shaikh Khalid team in quarters.

SHAIKH Khalid bin Hamad team stormed into the quarter-finals of the second Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa Soccer Championship after defeating Tawfeeq Al A'ali team in a crucial Group 'C' match at the Bahrain Football Association grounds in Riffa. On the fourth day of this annual event, being sponsored by Riffa Views and Kuwait Finance House, Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad team proved too strong for their opponents to record their second successive win in this five-team group and secure berth in the last eight with one match to spare.

The team, led by Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, now lead the group with six points from two matches, three ahead of Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman team and Tawfeeq Al A'ali who share second place.

In the same group, Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman team picked up their maiden victory, beating Shaikh Mohammed bin Salman team 8-3. It was the second consecutive defeat for Shaikh Mohammed team who bowed out of the competition.

In Group 'D', Shaikh Hamad bin Rashid team followed suit with a 3-1 win over Shaikh Abdulaziz bin Mohammed team to seal their berth in the quarter-finals.

It was the second win in a row for Shaikh Hamad bin Rashid team who now lead the group with six points while Shaikh Abdulaziz bin Mohammed team, who suffered their first defeat in two matches, remained on three points.

Also in the same group, Shaikh Abdulla bin Khalifa team took their first win beating Shaikh Abdulla bin Humood team to revive their qualifying chances. Shaikh Abdulla bin Humood team were handed their second consecutive defeat and are out of the title hunt.

Meanwhile, four matches are scheduled for tonight on the third day of the championship, starting at 9pm when Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad team, who already secured their place in the quarter-finals, will be looking to finish on a high note in Group 'A' as they take on Shaikh Abdulla bin Khalifa team.

That will be followed by Shaikh Khalid bin Ali team match against Shaikh Bader bin Khalid team in the same group which kicks off at 11pm.

Shaikh Mubarak bin Isa team will vie full points today and qualify for the last eight as they take on Shaikh Ibrahim bin Abdulaziz team in a deciding Group 'B' match.

Also in this group, defending champions Shaikh Khalifa bin Rashid team will also be seeking maximum points tonight at 11pm when they take on Shaikh Ahmed bin Abdulaziz team to seal a place in the next stage.

All matches are being staged at the BFA grounds and all are welcome to attend and cheer their favourite teams.

Sixteen teams are taking part in this year's championship, being sponsored by Riffa Views and Kuwait Finance House and offering a total prizemoney of BD60,000.

The teams, who were divided into four groups of four teams each, are competing it out in the first round which features round robin matches.

Copyright 2008 Gulf Daily News

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Sep 16, 2008
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