Al-Ameen clinch crown
Al Ameen were champions from 2006-2010 and have been a dominating force in the tournament which is into its 10th edition. The teams were tied 1-1 in regulation time. Prakash, Suhas, Mitesh and Wesley struck for Al Ameen in the penalty shootout, while Chot, Haris and Dominic scored for Christ. Ashish’s kick was saved by Al Ameen custodian Ranvijay Singh and Martin fired his shot wide.
In a tightly contested final, Christ looked like upsetting the Al Ameen applecart with Richard and Martin catching the latter’s defenders off-guard many a time in the first half. Haris had a chance to score for Christ in the 13th minute but Ranvijay made a good save.
In the 22nd minute, Al Ameen got lucky when Christ’s Dhiraj handled the ball inside the box and referee Sharath pointed to the spot. Prakash placed the spot-kick to perfection as Mohammad Ilyas’ wards took a 1-0 lead.
However, their joy was short-lived as Christ egged on by their chattering group of supporters scored in the 29th minute. Martin’s free-kick from the right was slotted home by an alert and acrobatic Richard as the Muralidharan-coached side made its way back into the match. Though both teams tried their best to break the deadlock in the second half, the goal remained elusive.
Al Ameen captain NS Raghavendra was overjoyed with his team’s performance. “We were confident going into the tie-breaker as we felt our goalkeeper was in good form and we trusted the players who took the spot-kicks. It’s a great feeling to win this title for the sixth time,’’ he added.
Result (final): Al Ameen College: 4 (Prakash 22nd) bt Christ University: 3 (Richard 29th) (via tie-breaker). FT: 1-1. Individual titles: Best goalkeeper: Ranvijay Singh (Al Ameen College); Best defender: Kiran (Al Ameen); Best midfielder: Chot (Christ University); Best forward: Santosh (Al Ameen).