KATHMANDU: Nepal crashed out of the AFC Under-16 Championship Group B Qualifiers following their 5-0 loss to Bahrain here at the Dasharath Stadium.
Earlier, defending champions Iran crushed Lebanon 4-0 riding on a hat-trick from Aeinehchi Amit Abbas to go atop with seven points from three matches. Iran topped Tajikistan, who also have seven points from three matches, on a better goal difference.
Kadhim Abdulhasan scored a brace while Mubarak Salem, Sayed Fadhel and Ayman Ebrahim scored one goal each to keep Bahrain’s hopes of qualifying alive. Bahrain have six points from three matches. They will play against Iran on Tuesday with the winner guaranteed a place in the finals.
Lebanon ended their campaign scripting three points, that they earned beating Nepal on the inaugural day. Nepal, who have not even scored a single goal yet, will play Tajikistan on the final day on October 13.
Nepal, who only had mathematical chances left to qualify, missed three opportunities in the first half. It was rather Bahrain who played exceptionally well though they were down to 10 men after Ahmed Hasan was expelled in the 24th minute for a foul against Ganesh Thapa Magar.
Bahrain took lead through Mubarak Salem’s spot kick in the 28th minute. Turkmenistan referee
Kurbanov Charymurat awarded the penalty after Ganesh Thapa Magar of Nepal was adjudged to have brought down Kadim Ebrahim inside the penalty area. TV replays, however, showed the incident occured outside the line.
Nepal chief coach Dambar Gurung said the ‘wrong decision’ from the referee was the turning point of the game. “It was a wrong decision from the referee as the Bahrain player dived across the area though he was tackled outside. The match completely changed after the penalty,” said Gurung.
Baharain then scored two goals on regular intervals. Kadhim Abdulhassan headed home on a long free kick in the 38th minute and two minutes later he cashed in on a corner scoring from a close range giving his side a 3-0 first half lead. Bahrain then extended their lead early in the second half when Sayed Fadhel scored on a solo effort taking the ball almost from the centre line to beat two Nepali defenders and goalkeeper Shumsher Khatri in the 48th minute. The bad became even worst for the home side when Sameer Limbu was sent off in the 54th minute when he needlessly kicked Komail Hasan. Four minutes later, Nepali striker Ram Thapa failed to score in an empty net. Bahrain were paid for their brilliant show in the dying moments of the match when Aymen Ebrahim converted a powerful shot that left Nepali custodian stranded.
Earlier in the first half Nepal missed two certain goal scoring chances within a minute. Bahrain goalkeeper Jasim Mohammad was beaten inside the area but Mubarak Salem blocked a shot from Amar Dangol and another powerful shot from Sulav Maskey was denied by defender Ali Jawher.
In the first match of the day, Aeinehchi Amir Abbas scored the first hat-trick of the tournment after Mahdipur Mahdi had given Iran the lead in the second half. Lebanon, with very few scoring attempts, were seemingly helpless as they were outplayed by the defending champions though the first half ended on a goalless stalemate. Mahdi converted with a powerful shot in the 47th minute and it was Abbas who did the remaining work for Iran.
Abbas doubled the lead for Iran converting a cross from Sasan Rajabzadeh in the 55th minute. In the 85th minute he scored the second goal following a cross from Ali Fathian and a minute later Davood Bahadori helped him complete his hat-trick.

CJ cries for judicial independence

Kathmandu: Chief Justice Min Bahadur Rayamajhi today urged everyone to protest against anyone who attacks judicial independence.
“Such an act should not be tolerated by those who love the independence of the judiciary,” the Chief Justice said. Without indicating anybody, Rayamajhi also hinted at ‘some activities’ going on in some quarters trying to disgrace the judiciary. He was speaking at a programme to mark the anniversary of the Administrative Court.
Senior Justice Anup Raj Sharma also condemned the activities against the judiciary. “This is like killing a man after being ill despite taking curative measure,” Sharma added.
President of the Nepal Bar Association Bishwokanta Mainali and CA Purna Kumari Subedi also urged everyone to respect, preserve and promote the independence of the judiciary. — HNS