A hat trick from forward Stanley Dimgba inspired Nigeria giants Enyimba to beat Algerian debutants Paradou 4-1 in their Group D clash on Sunday in Aba.
It was a man-of-the-match performance from Dimgba who was involved in four goals by his side, with Victor Mbaoma the other.
Enyimba led 3-0 at the break, adding one in the second half before Abdelkahar Kadri grabbed a consolation for the visitors in the dying embers of the game.
The victory was what the People’s Elephant needed to revive their hopes after two previous losses. It did come in grand style in the fourth game against a side they had suffered a lone goal defeat to in the reverse two week ago in Blida.
Enyimba, two-time African champions, leapfrogs Paradou into second place on six points, one shy of leaders Hassania Agadir, who face Ivorian debutants San Pedro later on Sunday in Agadir.
Dimgba began the goal harvest on the quarter-hour mark heading home from a Reuben Bala corner, leaving Paradou goalie Toufik Moussaoui with no option.
The goal brought out the best of the Algerians, who took the game to their host in search of the equalizer. Four minutes later, Enyimba goalie Stanley Nwabali tipped away Adem Zorgane’s low shot, as the post came to the rescue of the homers.
Three minutes past the half-hour mark, Nwabali was again called to duty and he scored full marks after denying Ghiles Guenaoui from close range.