A tedious game saw Senegal win Tunisia, even if they did not start as favourites for this Africa Cup final. Sadly the spirit and values of rugby were absent from this final.
The Senegalese created a big surprise, for the enjoyment of Jean Marc Foucras, national team’s coach. He had just announced recently that this year will be the last one for him as a coach. Regardless of the score, the Lions were very present during the first half and quickly took the lead in the match. Clearly superior in the scrums, they didn’t give much space to the Tunisians. The second half went on and on, the Senegalese team got tired and the Tunisians seized this opportunity to come back to the score. At the 78th minute of the game, Tunisia was now leading 14 to 12 !
The dreams of the Senegalese was vanishing… but the Lions displayed an unfailing determination ! Then unthinkable happened : after a huge fight broke out on the field, the referee rekindled the match and a last minute penalty kick was given in favour of the Senegalese ! Finally, the ball went through the posts, brining the final score to : 14 to 15 ! Senegal had now won the Cup and this also offered them a chance to present to their outgoing coach his very last victory as coach of the team.
What should have been a beautiful final was spoiled by many fights which Rugby Africa regrets and condemns severely. The continental body wishes to promote rugby as a unique sport thanks to its spirit of loyalty and values. The disciplinary officers will sanction the players responsible for this adequately and in accordance with the regulation 17 of World Rugby. In spite of the brawl, the teams cooled down and exchanged pleasantries. They also formed a guard of honour for each team in turn.