Machhindra Bahal rout Friends, Saraswati win

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, January 25:

Aajat Pradhan and Arjun Rijal scored a hat-trick each as Machhindra Bahal Club thrashed Friends Club 10-1 and Saraswati Youth Club beat United Youth Club 2-1 in the Martyrs’ Memorial ‘B’ Division League Football Tournament at Dasharath Stadium today.

Bouddha Football Club are on the top of the standings with 12 points from four matches, ahead of Machhindra Bahal Club, who also have 12 points but have played five matches. Saraswati are at third spot with nine points, followed by Friends (4).

Machhindra took lead through Aajat Pradhan in the third minute when he headed home on a Deepak Rai cross. Two minutes later, Deepak Rai doubled the tally.

Bijay Mahat of Friends Club reduced the margin to 2-1 in the 10th minute. In the 24th minute, Arjun Rijal of Machhindra made it 3-1 following Hem Kumar Gurung’s free kick.

Rijal added another goal in the 31st minute following Aajat Pradhan’s corner kick. Aajat Pradhan made it 5-1 in the 52nd minute, while Machhindra striker Buddha Chamjong dodged as many as three defenders inside the D-Box before firing the ball into the net in the 61st minute. Aajat Pradhan completed his hat-trick in the 66th minute when he dodged a defender and scored from inside the penalty area. Arjun Rijal followed Pradhan and scored his third and completed his hat-trick when he fired the ball from the edge of the D-Box in the 69th minute. For Machhindra, the ninth goal came in the 77th minute when midfielder Janak Sunuwar capitalised on goalkeeper Gautam’s error. Bijay Dangol completed the rout with a goal in the dying moments of the match. In an earlier match, Prashant Giri put Saraswati Youth Club ahead in the 40th minute through a penalty, which the team earned after a United Club defender brought down Man Sujan Rajbhandari inside the D-Box.

In a spectacular run in the 60th minute, four United Club players played a one-touch pass which saw Ashok Sunuwar netting the equaliser.

Manoj Kumar Shahi scored the winner from close range following Sunil Parajuli’s pass in the 86th minute.