Egypt: Playoffs set to kick off

The Egyptian National Football League is heading into the playoffs following a 20 game regular season in its fifth year of play.

The eight team league has been whittled down to four with the semifinals scheduled for Friday, April 19.

The regular season featured a few firsts including the first-ever overtime game when the Cairo Bears scored a touchdown in the first overtime period to defeat the GUC Eagles 6-0.

The Cairo Bears were first place finishers in the East followed by the GUC Eagles (3-2), Cairo Warriors (2-3) and the AUC Titans who finished fourth with a 1-4 record. The Cairo Hell Hounds finished atop the standings in the West Conference ahead of the second place MSA Tigers (2-3), third place Cairo Wolves (2-3) and last place Gezira Thunder (1-4).

Cairo Bears (4-1: 1st East) – MSA Tigers (2-3: 2nd West)

The Bears, winners of the East Conference, have reached the playoffs for the first time in their history following a season in which they suffered only one loss, a 26-6 defeat at the hands of the Cairo Hell Hounds. Meanwhile, this is the fourth trip to the semifinals for the Tigers. They were stopped by the Hell Hounds in the 2018 semifinals.

These two teams faced each other once in the regular season with the Bears edging MSA 19-16. On paper, the Bears have the edge. They have outscored opponents 101-54 while the Tigers have scored 69 points in five games but surrendered 98.  The Tigers have undergone a rebuilding year after the departure of many of their veterans, but the young players seemed to have stepped up. However, the Tigers enter the game without having played since March 22.

Cairo Hell Hounds (5-0: 1st West) – GUC Eagles (3-2: 2nd East)

The defending champion Cairo Hell Hounds,  who have not lost a game since March 10, 2017, enter the playoffs as the only unbeaten team in the ENFL and they will be facing the three-time title holders, the GUC Eagles. These are the only teams to have won the Egyptian title. They faced each other in 2018 in the semifinals with the Hell Hounds coming out on top 14-10, preventing the Eagles from reaching the Egyptian Bowl for the first time in their history.

Cairo finished atop the standings in the West Conference ahead of the second place MSA Tigers (2-3), third place Cairo Wolves (2-3) and last place Gezira Thunder (1-4). The Eagles wound up in second in the East conference behind the 4-1 Cairo Bears.

The Hell Hounds have the highest scoring offense in the ENFL having put up 167 points in five games while allowing 62. GUC scored 102 points in five games while allowing 54. This could be a battle of defenses.

Cairo has defeated the Eagles three straight times going into this contest the last time a 36-10 drubbing on March 10 this year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AFI
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