Dharan shoot Army out

Pokhara, January 28

Dharan Football Club defeated Tribhuvan Army Club 5-4 on penalties and advanced to the semi-finals of the 16th Aaha Rara Gold Cup Football Tournament at the Pokhara Stadium today.

The match was decided in tie breaker after the teams were deadlocked at 1-1 in the regulation period of 90 minutes and extra time of 20 minutes.

Skipper Bishnu KC, Nishan Limbu, Buddhiman Rai, Roman Limbu and Suraj BK converted their kicks for Dharan in the penalty shootout. Nawayug Shrestha, Deepak Gurung, Deep Lama and Bibek Basnet scored for TAC, while Geroge Prince Karki struck against the woodwork.

Earlier, TAC took the lead in the 18th minute through skipper Bharat Khawas following a pass from Bikesh Tamang. Dharan levelled the scores in the 63rd minute when Nishan Limbu scored from almost the centre line. Limbu was named the man of the match.

Dharan FC manager Ashok Rai lauded his players for an improved show. “We played a good game compared to our previous match. We missed a couple of chances in the first half and we succeeded in our plan of keeping the Armymen at bay to take the match to penalty shootout,” said Rai, whose team will face either Nepal Police Club or Laxmi Hyundai Manang Marshyangdi Club on Thursday.

TAC coach Nabin Neupane said the players took the match lightly and lost it despite taking the lead. “My boys concentrated in individual game, while the opponents were focused on team game,” said Neupane, who has guided the team to four titles this season.

On Monday, Nepal APF Club will take on Madan Bhandari Memorial Itahari Gold Cup winners Ruslan Three Star Club.