Defending SIC-SWAG Nyemitei Cup Kumasi Asante Kotoko took another step towards the annexation of the trophy this year when they defeated Kpando Heart of Lions 1-0 in the first leg of the competition at the Ohene Djan Stadium in Accra on Friday.
The annual Sports Writers Association of Ghana (SWAG) Cup, which has now been turned into a two-leg affair will see Lions trekking to Kumasi for the second leg encounter by the middle of April.
Kotoko secured the much needed victory in the 54th minute through Louis Agyeman, who capitalized on a defensive mix up in the Lions defence to score the only goal of the match.
The mix up in the Lions defence came as a result of a two man attack initiated by Francis Akwafo and Alex Asamoah which offered Agyemang a perfect opportunity to put his side on top.
Prior to the goal, Gladson Awako of Satellite 2009 fame, who was a constant threat on the Kotoko defence should have put his side ahead, but the hard working youngster saw a perfect goal scoring opportunity well dealt with by goalkeeper Soulaman Abdoulai.
But for the defensive mix up, Lions could have earned a draw in the first leg as they exhibited a spirited performance in the first half and early parts of the second half.
It was however, Kotoko who again came close to scoring 15 minutes after the first goal through talented midfielder Daniel Nii Adjei, but keeper Joseph Addo of Lions put up a splendid performance to deny the 'Porcupine Warriors' the second goal.
Lions also made similar efforts to cancel the lead but all their efforts were thwarted by the Kotoko defence built around veteran Godfred Yeboah.
Lions head coach Paa Kwesi Fabin however told GNA Sports that he was confident of turning things in his favour in the second leg adding that he would make the needed corrections to the team before the second game at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi.