Listen to the article

The eyes of Lebanese and Arab fans are turning to Nouhad Nawfal Stadium in Zouk Mikael for the decisive match between Al-Riyadi and La Sagesse in the semi-finals of the WASL tournament in the West Asia region on Wednesday night at 9:45 PM Beirut time.

One-Way Match

The host club, Al-Riyadi, seeks to secure qualification for the final after coming close to doing so in the previous match, but the rush of its players in the final minutes cost them the match and pushed the decision to a decisive match.

On the other hand, La Sagesse is enjoying a successful period since its victory against Maristes Champville and its win against Antranik in the Lebanese championship playoffs. Jad el Hajj’s team is just one win away from qualifying for the golden square to face Beirut SC.

Foreign Element of Both Teams

As the season is coming to a close, it was necessary for both teams to strengthen their ranks with high-level foreign players.

Al-Riyadi caused a sensation by signing Australian star Thon Maker, who is one of the best defenders in the region under the basket, which was lacking for the yellow club defensively to appear stronger. Maker will begin his journey with the yellow team against La Sagesse in front of fans who have bought all available tickets — approximately 8,000 — for the second consecutive time to confirm once again that they are the team’s number one player.

On the other hand, La Sagesse bolstered its ranks with Nikola Rakocevic, who made his debut against Antranik by scoring 17 points and showing remarkable performances both in attack and defense in his first appearance with the team. However, he will not be able to participate with his team in the WASL matches as La Sagesse used the total number of foreigners allowed to register in the tournament, which is seven names, including Zach Lofton, an active player with the Homentmen team, a mistake that must be attributed to the person behind this registration as Lofton had not yet signed with the team. Thus, coach Jad El Hajj will enter the match with the foreign trio composed of Jonathan Gibson, CleAnthony Early, and Deng.

La Sagesse’s victory would qualify them for the WASL finals for the first time in their history, while Al-Riyadi aims, as usual, to win all the tournaments it participates in, both locally and abroad.

Who will win the second ticket to face Gorgan of Iran in the final?