Aiyamma spurs BPCL to victory

Tushar Khandkar (left) of BPCL tries to stop the progress of MLI’s Krishna Patil in their Super Division clash at the KSHA stadium on Sunday. DH Photo

It took a quarter-of-an-hour and a counter-attack from their opponents, which almost ended in a goal, for BPCL to wake up. But once they got into their groove, they dominated the proceedings. Krishna Patil had the BPCL defence on their toes in the 15th minute but the MLI forward’s weak shot was saved by goalkeeper Swinder Singh.

The ensuing clearance was picked up by Sabu Varkey before passing it to Ravipal Singh on the right wing, who put the ball on Hari Prasad’s path. Hari made no mistake to sound the board in the 16th minute.

Four minutes later, BPCL took a firm grip on the match when Aiyamma converted a penalty stroke, earned by Jarnail Singh after his drive from close range hit the foot of MLI defender Mahesh S.

The two-goal lead coupled with their rivals’ inability to create more pressure left BPCL complacent. Taking advantage of the situation, MLI penetrated into the rival citadel and with no one to mark Patil on the right, the striker squared it to Vijay Pandagle, who directed the cross into the net in the 30th to reduce the margin.

Soon after, BPCL swelled the lead with Karamjeet Singh getting into the score sheet with a deflection from a Ravipal cross. With the match almost in their pocket, BPCL played a waiting game in the second half. Amar made it 4-1 by scooping a Jarnail cross over a sliding Palaksha in the 40th before Irshad Ali, six minutes later, sounded the board off a short corner. MLI, who lost to MEG on Friday, received couple of penalty corners towards the end but Swinder was up to the task in thwarting those attempts.

Results: BPCL: 5 (Hari Prasad 16th, Amar Aiyamma 20th PS, 40th, Karamjeet Singh 32nd, Irshad Ali 46th PC) bt MLI: 1 (Vijay Pandagle 30th); Army Green: 4 (Rome 19th, 30th, Heera Singh 20th, Prabhakar 32nd) bt ASC: 2 (Deepu 44th, Rawa Bangra 69th).

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