MMC edge past hosts Jhapa, win Gold Cup title

Jhapa, February 6

Laxmi Hyundai Manang Marshyangdi Club won the title of the second Rumpum Jhapa Gold Cup Football Tournament here at Domalal Stadium today.

Second half goal from Afeez Olawale was enough for MMC to defeat hosts Rumpum Jhapa-XI 1-0 in the final.

In the highly competitive final, MMC dominated at the initial phase of the game but the hosts were able to prevent them in the first half.

However, MMC, who had travelled to Jhapa after defending the title of Aaha Rara Gold Cup in Pokhara on January 28, took lead after the interval.

Olawale found the back of the nets in the 63rd minute after Nirajan Malla’s initial attempt was punched by Jhapa glovesman Alen Neupane.

MMC also created couple of goal scoring chances but were not able to execute them. MMC skipper Sujal Shrestha was unlucky to hit the post in the 16th minute despite beating Jhapa goalie Neupane, who stood firm while denying Olawale’s attempt in the 19th minute.

Jhapa had almost taken the lead in the 39th minute but Rajin Dhimal’s powerful free kick was punched out by MMC goalkeeper Dinesh Thapa, who made another crucial save when Ajayi Martins tried a shot in the 43rd minute.

Champions MMC earned Rs 700,000, while runners-up Jhapa received Rs 350,000.

MMC’s Rohit Chand was named the best player of the tournament and got Yamaha motorbike from Sayapatri Trade Link of Birtamod, while Nirajan Malla received Rs 7,000 after being adjudged the man-of-the-match.

Jhapa’s Karna Limbu and Devendra Tamang were joint highest scorers and got Rs 15,000 each. Tamang also earned Rs 15,000 for being the best defender. Tournament’s best goalkeeper Alen Neupane received a mobile set worth Rs 15,600 and the best midfielder Ranjit Dhimal earned Rs 15,000.

A total of 10 teams, including one from India, took part in the tournament.