By Morris Rawal
Onduparaka ended the first round on a high note by picking up their first victory of the year thanks to a hat-trick from Denis Ojara in the second half.
In a UPL match at Greenlight Stadium, the Caterpillars defeated UPDF 5-1 with goals from Dominic Abonga and Emmanuel Oketch.
Early on, Ezekiel Katende scored for the Visitors, but the Army team departed Arua empty-handed.
Ojara completed his first-ever UPL hat trick in just 20 minutes, making it Caterpillar’s finest Christmas present ever.
The outcome indicates that UPDF fell to 13th place with 10 points, while Onduparaka, who is still at the bottom with 7 points, has narrowed the gap in the ranking to four points.
With just nine minutes played, Katende gave UPDF FC the lead after receiving from Douglas Oyirwoth with a stunning shot into the top corner.
Onduparaka equalized the score shortly thanks to a goal by Abonga after a corner kick from Gaddafi Gadinho.
Okocha earned a penalty after being fouled by Davis Kakaire in the last seconds of the first half, which he scored to give the home team the lead.
After receiving a pass from Adriko just 10 minutes into the second half, Ojara made a stunning flip to beat his marker and increase Onduparaka’s advantage.
Following Abonga’s drop ball, which he blasted at first sight, Ojara scored his second and the fourth goals for the hosts five minutes later.
Ojara scored a fifth goal for his team and his hat trick with 15 minutes remaining thanks to another overhead pass from Gaddafi Gadinho.
The visitors’ legs essentially ran out of steam in the second half as they failed to attempt even a single shot on goal.
On February 11, Ondupara will play URA at Green Light to start its second round, and UPDF will play Express.
Onduparaka-Mathias Muwanga, Gadinho Gaddafi, Bernard Ndifuna, Rashid Yakin, Rashid Okocha, Alex Adriko, Dominic Abonga, Amosi Muwonge, Denis Ojara, Davis Mayanja.
UPDF-Simon Mbuya, Ibrahim Wammanah, Samson Kasozi, Rogers Adriko, Frank Yiga, Donato Okello, Denis Kakaire, Ezekiel Katende, Rogers Mugisha, Douglas Oyirwoth, Aggrey Kirya.