Kano Pillars recorded their first win of the new Glo Premier League season at home to Bayelsa United on Saturday.
Two goals in four minutes helped the defending Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) champions discard the ‘Restoration Boys’ in their opening game of the season.
Coach Okey Emordi named the duo of Reuben Ogbonnaya and Ubong Ekpai, two of the five injured players in last week’s armed robbery attack, in his starting XI having being given the all-clear to play football.
New signing Adamu Mohammed and Suleiman Usman also started in Sai Masu Gida’s first home game of the season.
Former Kano Pillars defender Anthony Abaluwa returned to the Sani Abacha Stadium on the opposition’s side and proved a handful for his former team-mates in the first half.
Adamu Hassan opened scoring from a Rabiu Ali cross in the first minute of the restart and Moses Ekpai doubled Pillars’ advantage from Promise James’ assist.
Proceedings were momentarily held up on the hour mark when a Policeman’s gas canister apparently went off accidentally. The home side sought for a third goal late on but to no avail.
Pillars will be on continental duty next weekend with a trip to Moghreb Tetouan of Morocco in a rescheduled Caf Champions League first round tie.