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Page last updated at 14:49 GMT, Sunday, 3 April 2011 15:49 UK

Violence delays resumption of Egypt league

Zamalek fans invade pitch
Zamalek fans invaded the pitch and attacked players of Club African and officials in Cairo

The Egyptian league has been postponed indefinitely just one day after violence marred a continental club match in Cairo.

The league was scheduled to resume on 13 April but crowd trouble during Saturday's game between Zamalek and Club Africain forced the decision.

The Egypt Football Association (EFA) president Samir Zaher made the announcement in Cairo on Sunday.

The EFA will meet the clubs in the coming days to examine the situation.

The Egyptian authorities reached the decision after a weekend crowd invasion forced the abandonment of the high-profile Champions League match in Cairo.

Local team Zamalek were leading Tunisian visitors Club Africain 2-1 as the second round, second leg qualifier drew to a close and needed another goal to squeeze through on the away-goal rule having lost 4-2 in Tunis two weeks ago.

The five-time African champions thought they had got that goal when an Ahmed Gaafar header landed in the net only for the Egyptian to be ruled offside by the Algerian match officials with television replays backing the decision.

This sparked a pitch invasion with an initial few supporters soon followed by several hundred and track-suited security officials successfully raced to protect the referee and his assistants before escorting them from the field.

African Champions League organisers seem likely to award the tie to Club Africain while Zamalek could face a variety of punishments, including a fine and being forced to stage African fixtures outside Cairo behind closed doors.

Egypt had hoped to resume the 16-club league after a three-month stoppage caused by the revolt that ousted long-time authoritarian ruler Hosni Mubarak.

This was the fifth African club fixture to be staged in Egypt since Mubarak lost a three-decade grip on power and the first at which there were crowd incidents.



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