Players of Himalayan Sherpa (orange) in action against Armed Police Force during a match of the Rumpum Jhapa Gold Cup Football Tournament in Birtamod, Jhapa on Monday. Photo: Republica
JHAPA, Jan 31:Himalayan Sherpa Club snatched victory over Armed Police Club (APF) from the jaws of defeat on Monday in the ongoing Rumpum Jhapa Gold Cup. After trailing 2-0 till the 87th minute, Himalayan Sherpa scored two late goals in the dying minutes to level the match and then went on to win the game 3-2 in penalty shootout. With the win over the departmental side, Himalayan Sherpa has reached the semifinals.
Heman Gurung, Nirajan Khadka and Nishan Limbu successfully converted the penalties for Himalayan Sherpa while Bhupal Gurung's shot was saved by APF's goalkeeper Amrit Chaudhary and Sunil Bal's shot went wide. Similarly for APF, only Nabin Lama and Rajendra Rawal scored while Sudip Shikhrakar and Santosh Katwal were denied by Himalayan Sherpa's goalie Kishor Giri. Likewise, departmental side's Milan Rai hit the woodwork.
Earlier in the regular time of the match Yubraj Khadka scored a brace for APF while Sunil Bal and Nishan Limbu netted one each goal for Himalayan Sherpa to push the game to penalties.
APF had gone ahead in the game played at Domalal Stadium, Birtamod, with Yubraj Khadka's goal in the 13th minute. Yubraj scored a beautiful header utilizing a pass from Shyam Nepali. After producing the early lead, APF had to wait until the 75th minute to extend the lead. It was again Yubraj who scored for APF as he made 2-0 utilizing a pass from Nabin Lama. When APF was close to victory, it was forced to make goalkeeping substitution as first choice goalie Raju Yogi sustained injury in the 85th minute which became the turning point of the match. Substituted goalkeeper Amrit Chaudhary then conceded two goals within a minute. Sunil Bal scored a header in the 87th minute utilizing a pass from Heman Gurung to revive the hopes of Himalayan Sherpa. Nishan Limbu completed the turnaround for Himalayan Sherpa scoring a minute later. Himalayan Sherpa's goalkeeper Kishor Giri was declared the man-of-the-match and awarded Rs 7000.
On Tuesday, defending champion Tribhuvan Army Club will take on Rupandehi-XI.