Najma bow to Saudi’s Khaleej in Asian clubs handball
TDT | Manama
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Bahrain’s Al Najma suffered their first defeat last night in the 26th Asian Men’s Club League Championship, currently being held in Kuwait City.
The competition’s reigning champions bowed to fellow-title hopefuls Al Khaleej of Saudi Arabia 21-25 in their second Group A game of the preliminary round.
Najma trailed 12-13 at the half, and could not recover.
Ironically, Khaleej were spearheaded by Bahrain national team stars Hussain Al Sayyad and Mohammed Abdulhussain, both of whom were part of the Najma team that won the title in the previous edition of the tournament held earlier this year.
Abdulhussain was named last night’s Player of the Match.
Najma and Khaleej are in the same pool as Al Gharafa of Qatar, Kuwait Sporting Club of Kuwait and Golden Eagle of India.
Al Salah of Palestine were also set to take part, but have withdrawn.
Group B is composed of Al Qadsiya of Kuwait, Sai of India, Al Arabi of Qatar, Al Jaish of Iraq, Shabab Saida of Lebanon and Al Sharjah of the UAE.
Najma are scheduled to return to action tonight against Gharafa at 6pm, Bahrain time.
Najma complete their preliminary round schedule on Friday against Kuwait Sporting Club at 8pm.
Following a rest day on Saturday next week, the top two teams from each group move on to the semi-finals on 26 November.
The gold and bronze medal matches are then set for 27 November.
Najma won the previous Asian clubs title earlier this year in Isfahan, Iran.
They defeated Al Duhail of Qatar 31-30 in a game that went into double overtime. Najma claimed only