Muritala spurs Mahindra to top

A header by Ranty Martins in the 19th minute gave Dempo an early lead but Mohammad Rafi restored parity for the hosts in the 53rd minute.

Ali then took matters in his own hands and scored two goals in the 67th and the 93rd minute to hand over the match to the hosts.

Earlier, Dempo began the match in the right way, with Martins heading a cross from the right flank by Valeriano Rebello to put them ahead.

Rafi gave the team the  equaliser.  Fourteen minutes after the home team scored their first goal, Ali, who got a pass from Dharmaraj Ravanan, ran with the ball and as the rival goalkeeper came forward, lobbed it over his head to make it 2-1 for Mahindra. In second-half stoppage time, Ali scored agains to make it 3-1 for the hosts.

In another match, defending champions Churchill Brothers capitalized on loose defending as they scripted a thumping 6-0 win over JCT at Nehru Stadium.

Churchill who led 3-0 at half time, scored through Nascimento Silveira (9th), Felix Chimaokwu (10th), Lalrindika Falte (38th), Odafe Okolie (77th, 89th) and Ogba Kalu Nnanna (90).

Meanwhile, Viva Kerala continued their unbeaten run courtesy a 1-1 draw with Chirag United. Sirajuddin opened the scoring for Viva in the 27th minute only for Ashim Biswas to equalise for Chirag ten minutes later.

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