MPC struggle to beat Rupandehi in quarters

Himalayan News Service

Pokhara, January 18:

Jumanu Rai struck twice as Mahendra Police Club (MPC) defeated Rupandehi XI 3-2 in the quarter-final match of the third Aha Gold Cup Football Tournament, which has been organised by Sahara Club of Pokhara, here today. Rupandehi took lead through Amar Pun in the 33rd minute, when he found the back of the net following Surya Gurung’s pass.

A minute later, Ananta Thapa scored an equaliser for MPC on Ramesh Budhathoki’s pass.

The policemen went into the half time with a 2-1 lead, thanks to young and dynamic striker Jumanu Rai, who scored in the 41st minute. MPC, which finished runner-up for the second straight year in the National League, could not perform to the expectations of the spectators who were at the Pokhara Stadium to cheer them. The overnight rain affected the play. In the 48th minute, Jumanu Rai extended the lead with a quick header which left Rupandehi custodian Waris Gurung stranded.

Rupandehi had to work hard to add another goal to their credit. In the 55th minute, the game took a turn when Surya Gurung reduced the deficit to 3-2 following Bakhan Rana’s cross.

Trailing 3-2, the inexperienced Rupandehi players created some moves looking for an equaliser, but fell short in front of the experienced MPC defence.