Kumasi, Dec 3, GNA - Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Nigeria's Enyimba International Football Club gained automatic qualification to the semi-finals of the maiden Otumfuo Invitational Cup Tournament when both teams were seeded at a draw in Kumasi on Friday. The draw, which coincided with the official launch of the tournament, saw the other participating teams, ASFA Yennega of Burkina Faso and AshantiGold FC as well as Kumasi King Faisal Babies and Asec Mimosa of Cote d'Ivoire pitching their strength against each other in that order in the preliminary stage.
The teams were each presented with a cheque for 15,000 dollars as participation fees for the tournament, which is scheduled for December 11-18 at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi. Kotoko was seeded against the backdrop of its experience in African football and would meet the winner of the Faisal-Asec match in the semi-finals whilst Enyimba, who had the nod on the grounds of its sterling performance at both the domestic and international competitions in recent time would meet the winner of the Asfa Yennega-AshGold match at the semi-finals.
The Otumfuo Cup tournament is geared towards promoting unity among clubs in the West African sub-region and has at stake a Cup and cash prize of 75,000 dollars to be shared among the first four teams. The winner will take home the Cup and cash prize of 30,000 dollars whilst the second, third and fourth placed teams receive cash prizes of 20,000, 15,000 and 10,000 dollars respectively.
Mr Edward Yigah, Chief Executive Officer of Phoenix Consult, organizers of the event, in an address expressed the hope that the tournament will serve as a good platform for the participants to show case their preparation towards their African Clubs Champions league and Confederation Cup campaigns.
Mr Kabore Ahmed, Secretary-General of Asfa Yennega and Mr George Amoako, Chief Executive Officer of King Faisal, who spoke on behalf of the foreign and local participating teams, said they were optimistic that the tournament will enhance the cordial relationship that exist among clubs in the sub-region.