Sankata Club’s Tampi Ernest tackles Nepal Police Club’s Ravi Paswan during a Martyr’s Memorial A-Division League football match at the ANFA Complex in Satdobato, Lalitpur on Tuesday. Photo Courtesy: ANFA
KATHMANDU, Dec 5: Sankata Club has climbed up to the second place continuing its rich vein of form as it defeated the departmental team Nepal Police Club 2-1 in the Martyr’s Memorial A-Division League at Satdobato in Lalitpur on Tuesday.
It has leveled the points with Manang on 15, but the leader is ahead on goal difference and still has a game in hand.
With the win, Sankata has registered its fifth win in six games, while Police is fifth with 10 points.
At the All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) Complex, goals from Saroj Dahal and Dipesh Ale Magar helped Sankata defeat Police.
Sankata took the lead through Dahal as he converted a cross from Laxman Ruchal in the 29th minute, while it doubled its lead as Magar cleverly took the ball away from Police defenders Dinesh Rajbanshi and Tej Tamang, who were stuck in the middle of the action, and scored a goal in the 37th minutes to give his side a 2-0 lead. But Police instantly pulled a goal back through Ravi Paswan two minutes after that.
Police failed to equalize going into the second half with a 2-1 deficit, and succumbed to its second loss of the season. It had earlier lost against the other departmental team Tribhuvan Army Club 5-1. Sankata played defensive football in the second period, and Police could not snatch a goal.
Sankata head coach Salyan Khadgi said that the tactics he set for the game worked very well.
“We had made the tactics to play defensive game and hit on the counter attack against a strong team like Police. The confidence of the players was high after we took the lead early in the game with the tactics we had set,” Khadgi said. “This win has increased the morale of the team which was down by the Army loss. This win has motivated our goal which is to finish inside the top five. Now, we will play attacking football without any pressure.”
Police head coach Ananta Thapa said that the team faced bad luck after missing three important players for the game.
“Reliable striker Suman Lama and Yam Tamang are out injured. Ajit Bhandari also missed the game due to suspension. We created a lot of chances throughout the game, but the finishing did not work,”Thapa said. “The team faced pressure after conceding two goals early on in the game. We replied one back instantly, but could not get back in the game.”
In the other match played earlier on the day, the other departmental team Armed Police Force (APF) Club registered its second win of the season by defeating New Road Team 2-1.
A penalty goal from Sudip Shikhrakar in the 73th minute cutting a 1-1 score gave APF a win and all three points.
APF had earlier taken the lead in the third minute with a goal from Yuvraj Khadka, but conceded in the 15th minute with a goal from Rajesh Pariyar.
APF put New Road under pressure in the first half, and kept playing that way in the second period as well. APF had got the penalty in the 73rd minute when New Road’s Ashim Gurung fouled Khadka. Shikhrakar then scored from the spot giving APF the crucial lead.
APF got other chances after that, but could not extend its lead further.
APF has climbed up to the seventh place with seven points, while New Road is at the bottom of the table with a point. New Road got that point from a 2-2 draw in the first match of the league season.
APF head coach Rajendra Tamang said that the win has given him some relief after losing three of the six games it has played.
“We had to go through bad results in our other games. This win has given us some relief. But, we are not that satisfied just with this win,” Tamang said. “After losing back-to-back matches, I trained the players from the start. The coordination still has not been that good.”
New Road head coach Maheshwor Mulmi said that the lack of experience of the players has prevented his side of getting results in favor. “We have most of the young players in the team and they have no experience. The team performance is not solid as well,” Mulmi said. “The team has not got to train consistently. The league games have been like practice games for the players. There is no team set because we did not get to train between the Dashain and Tihar festivals.’’