Tigers strike late to edge past Kalighat

Last Updated 14 March 2013, 19:24 IST

Mumbai Tigers FC roared loudly in the dying moments of their I-League Second Division tie against Kalighat Milan Sangha to snatch a stunning victory from the hands of defeat here on Thursday.

After missing a truckload of chances, the Tigers seemed headed for defeat but former India midfielder NP Pradeep brought his team on level terms with a brilliant free-kick in the last minute of regulation time before Demba Dikhate headed home with virtually the last touch of the match to seal a dramatic 2-1 win at the Bangalore Football Stadium.

The Tigers are on four points from two matches while Kalighat are on three from as many games.

The Tigers took a while to settle down but soon found their range against Kalighat, who after some initial fizz simply sat back defending, choosing to attack only on the counter. Enjoying a lion’s share of the possession, the Tigers kept creating chances at will but sloppy finishing let them down.

The missed chances came to haunt them badly as Iyokwobe Ghizoba Christopher made them pay following a defensive error from Kali Alaudeen in the 40th minute.

The right-back shot straight at a lurking Christopher in an attempt to clear the ball off the penalty area and the Nigerian made the best use of the gift, calmly slotting it past ’keeper Arup Debnath.

Despite the setback, the Tigers began the second half in right earnest, pushing Kalighat completely on the defensive. However, just like the opening half, lack of composure inside the box cost them as they kept squandering chances.

Just when it appeared that Kalighat would notch a fighting win, Pradeep kick-started the turnaround. He rifled home a vicious free-kick, the ball ricocheting off the cross bar into the net. Dikhate then finished off the comeback job, heading in powerfully off a corner.

In the day’s earlier match, Southern Samity edged past Eagles FC, thanks to M Basanta Singh’s 34th minute goal. With their first win Southern Samity are on four points while Eagles have just one.

Friday’s match: Luangmual vs Hindustan FC (4.00 pm).

(Published 14 March 2013, 19:24 IST)

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