Sahara Club shoot Delhi United out

Hetauda, January 3

Sahara Club of Pokhara defeated 10-man Delhi United Football Club of India 3-2 in penalty shoot-out and advanced to the semi-finals of the second Tuborg Hetauda Gold Cup International Invitational Football Tournament here at the Forestry University grounds today.

The winners of the match were decided through spot kick battle after both the teams played a 1-1 stalemate in the regulation period. The extra time was scrapped due to poor light.

Sahara won the battle after their glovesman Sujit Gurung made three saves in penalty shoot-out. Gurung denied Delhi’s Gyale, Roshan Chhetri and Logo, while Don Lopcha and Maruf converted their shots for Delhi.

Similarly, Bishu Gurung, Shiva Subedi and Pradeep Gurung scored for Sahara, while Sushan Gurung’s attempt was saved by Dehli’s goalie Sanju. Sahara Club goalkeeper Gurung was named the man-of-the-match and received Rs 3,000. Sahara will now face defending champions Laxmi Hyundai Manang Marshyangdi Club for a place in the final. MMC advanced to the last four beating Nepal APF Club.

Earlier, Delhi were reduced to 10 men after FIFA Referee Sudish Pandey expelled Rishi for manhandling Sahara’s Saroj Yonjan in the 39th minute. However, Delhi took the lead in the 61st minute after Jonathan found the back of the nets utilising a cross from Don Lopcha. Richard Pun rescued Sahara from the loss with a perfect header off Roshan Malla’s free kick in the 72nd minute. Both the teams created a couple of moves but failed to convert them and the match headed towards penalty shoot out.

Sahara coach Kiran Shrestha said his side put full efforts against a physically-strong team from Delhi. “Our players did not lose their hopes despite conceding an early goal,” said Shrestha. “The Delhi team turned out to be a stronger one than what we had thought,” he added.

On Wednesday, last year’s runners-up Tribhuvan Army Club will play against CMG Club Sankata in the another quarter-final match of the tournament, which is organised by Suman Bhomjan Memorial Foundation.

APF enter semi-finals

JHAPA: Nepal APF Club beat CMG Club Sankata 1-0 to enter the semi-finals of the Mechi Netralaya Kakarvitta Gold Cup on Tuesday. The solitary goal from Deepak Rai was enough for APF to register victory. Man-of-the-match Rai scored the goal in the 17th minute. He received Rs 5,000. APF will now face hosts Kakarvitta Football Training Centre in the last four tie. In Wednesday’s semi-final match, Rumpum Jhapa-XI will play against Rupandehi-XI.