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Monday, 20 November 2017

Bidvest boss relishes CL qualification chances after ‘playing really well in hostile environment’ in Cairo

Ahly visit South Africa's Bidvest Wits for the CAF Champions League round of 32 return leg in Johannesburg on Sunday, going into the game with a one-goal lead

Omar Zaazou , Friday 17 Mar 2017
Ahly
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Bidvest Wits manager Gavin Hunt believes his side’s CAF Champions League last-16 qualification chances are still alive after playing ‘really well in a hostile environment’ in Cairo where they were defeated 1-0.

Going into the first-round second-leg at Johannesburg’s BidVest Stadium on Sunday, Hunt said his players are up for the occasion after losing by a one-goal margin, which gave them a lot of optimism that they can beat Ahly at home.

“We’re still alive in the competition. We played really well in a hostile environment. I was proud of the boys’ effort,” Hunt told SunSport.

"Al Ahly are a class act. They have half of the Egyptian national team in their side so our result was a credible one, but we know we have to go for it at home."

“The players are really up for this game. But there are no expectations on us.

 “The fact we came away from Cairo losing by a single goal gives the players a lot of optimism and hope that we can beat them at home.

“We’ll go all out. We’re still very much alive and want to progress to the next stage.”

A second-half header from Egypt defender Ahmed Hegazy gave Ahly their slender lead over a resilient Bidvest side, who managed to keep the hosts at bay throughout the first half.

The eight-time African champions failed to make the most of a handful of opportunities at El-Salam Stadium last week, giving the debutant South Africans hope in the return leg.

Ahly will be heading to the game missing skipper Hossam Ghaly and Nigerian forward Junior Ajayi due to respective injuries, while Bidvest will be without suspended defender Thulani Hlatshwayo.   

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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