The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: Sunrise Eye APR Scalp

Defending championS APR will be hoping to end their domestic woes when they take on second division side Sunrise at Stade de Kigali on Saturday in preliminary round of the annual Peace Cup knockout competition.

The military side's league campaign this season has left them somewhat in distress as they find themselves in an unfamiliar third position, three points behind leaders and archrivals Rayon Sport with eight games left.

APR are hoping the knockout competition will prove to be the perfect distraction from their league and CAF Champions League struggles.

The military side go into Saturday's match hoping to avoid a third successive defeat after losing to Mukura in the league in midweek and disappointing home loss against Burundi's Vital'o in the Champions League.

Coach Eric Nshimiyimana will be without injured goalie Jean Luc Ndayishimiye, defender Heritier Turatsinze and striker Farouk Ruhinda Saifi.

But his opposite number Abdul Mbarushimana of Sunrise FC said, "Cup matches are different to league matches so we will go out and give it our best shot possible, in this competition anything is possible."

Sunrise who have been in scintillating form in the second division league and they hope to get promoted to the top flight division at the first time of asking.

The Rwamagana-based side, lead Pool A with 32 points in 13 matches played this season, believe they can pull off an upset against the record seven-time champions.

Elsewhere, Police FC coach Goran Kopunovic acknowledges that competition will be immense but, at the same time, he holds belief in his squad that they can make it to the top. Police face Muhanga at Mumena stadium.

Nine matches are on the card this afternoon while eight more will be played tomorrow as 34 clubs vie for a place in the last 16. The winner of the competition will represent Rwanda in the 2014 CAF Confederation Cup.

Preliminary round

Today

APR vs Sunrise

Police vs AS Muhanga

AS Kigali vs Etoile de l'est

Mukura vs Gasabo

Marines vs Isonga

Unity vs Intare

La Jeunesse vs Pepiniere

Bugesera vs Esperance

Vision JN vs Kirehe

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