Greetings Kankas and Kankies.
It was strange having the last match of the season on a Monday evening but that didn’t deter the tribunes from turning up in force to salute the players who had achieved the impossible and returned our great Club to their rightful position in the Super League !
If I am to be honest (and yes, I know, that’s unusual for me !) I would have been content to consolidate our position in the PTT League at the beginning of the season after last season’s euphoria of winning the 2nd League. However, thanks to Mehmet Yigner and Ismail Kartal the impossible became reality after a sluggish beginning to the season.
The away victory in Rize last year was probably the turning point and it has been a roller-coaster of a ride all the way, culminating in securing promotion in Manisa last weekend.
So, it was carnival time last night in the last match of the season.
ANKARAGUCU 1 Adana Demirspor 1
Posh Kanka Ahmet and I met-up in the garden of the TSDY Restaurant for our pre-match ‘refreshments’ and a singsong with our Maraton buddies. Then we joined the remainder of the kankas in the Stadium – Battle Damaged Kanka Damon, Maniac Kanka Harun, Nurer Kanka, Horseman Kanka, Kaleci Kanka Tansu and Vittoria Kanka Miguel.
It was non-stop singing from start to finish and the carnival atmosphere was maintained throughout, including the customary Mexican Wave in the 2nd half.
To footie then, and the match sprang to life in the 14th minute when Enes constructed and scored a great goal. A piece of quick thinking and football skill from Enes on the right when he back heeled the ball to the overlapping runner, Erdem. The cross came in which was knocked down to Enes, who had anticipated the cross, and he thundered in an unstoppable shot.
The Bursa Song was next and then on the half our mark Kehinde had a great chance, but with only the goalkeeper to beat, he scuffed his shot which was easily saved. In his defence, the ball didn’t sit-up for him !
From that point in the 1st half it was all Demirspor as they searched for the equaliser. They made it abundantly clear that they were not here to celebrate Ankaragucu’s promotion !
On FIVE occasions leading up the the half time whistle Demirspor had opportunities to level it, but Altay came to Ankaragucu’s rescue with some crucial saves. The Demirspor forward Theo Mendy was a constant thorn in the side of Ankaragucu’s defence and he crafted out some chances for himself and others. So, I thought Ankaragucu was rather fortunate to go in 1-0 up at half time !
Half time entertainment was provided by the professional Misket Dance Group together with some young boys in the group who put on a great show as always.
Into the 2nd half and play was held-up for 5 minutes when the scoreboard tribune let-off lots of flares which caused a smokescreen across the playing area. Play resumed with a screamer of a shot (I think it was Kehinde) which was instinctively an acrobatically saved.
Play was fast and furious from both sides, but then in the 77th minute, Demirspor decided rather fortunately, to become party-poopers ! A weak shot (or was it a cross ?!) on the right was well covered by Altay, but somehow he contrived to let the ball go between his legs and in. A schoolboy error which he may not easily forget !! However, an immediate response came from all the tribunes when they shouted his name in support. A fine sporting gesture !
Demirspor had two more opportunities to try and spoil the party, but for the first attempt 6 minutes before the end, M’bamba made a saving tackle to halt a Demirspor breakaway. Then in time added on, a Demirspor shot went just over the bar.
So, I suppose it would be fair to say that a draw was a fair reflection of the mach in which both team were intent on attack and giving us entertainment on the pitch to match the entertainment off the pitch !!
It was then time to head to The Bira Park to celebrate and we were fortunate to witness the open top bus parade along GMK Boulevard with the players receiving the plaudits they richly deserved.
The Police closed the city centre in Kizilay to traffic and it was taken over by thousands of Ankaragucu supporters, many with coloured flares. A stage was erected in Guven Park and live music was played. It was an unbelievable sight and an evening which will live long in our memories.
Now it is over to Mehmet Yigner and Ismail Kartal to start work on recruiting and preparing the team for the coming season in the Super League.
Watch this space for news as it unfolds !
All the best from Eski Kanka Jim