Tarif treble takes ONGC to the top

Football I-League II Division

Tarif treble takes ONGC to the top

No holds barred: Sovan Chakraborty (left) and Inacio  Colaco of SESA battle for possession on Wednesday. DH photo

Tarif netted three goals to help ONGC go on top of the league standings with 10 points from four matches, one point clear of Bangalore outfit Hindustan Aeronautics Sports Club, who have a game in hand.

Tarif found the target in the 28th, 44th and 66th minutes and Badmas Babatunde scored in the 38th at the Bangalore Football stadium. Oil India reduced the margin through HL Routa in the 76th minute.

Later, Sporting boosted their chances of qualification to the I-League proper with three hard-earned points that took their tally to seven from four matches. SESA held a slight advantage in the initial stages but failed to capitalise on the chances that came their way.

Ivo Fernandes did well to reach a back pass from Sporting’s Deb Kumar Sasmal to custodian Naseem Akhtar. The gloveman came up with a timely tackle to clear the ball out of danger in the 10th minute. Soon after, Inacio Colaco failed to get the decisive touch when Gagandeep Singh essayed a cross from the left that went across the face of the goal.

Both teams then adopted safety-first tactics and played a defensive game. However, seven minutes before half time, Sporting skipper Jothi Kumar found his way through the left wing and delivered a cross that found Theodore Sunday Wrobeh at the far post.
Sunday’s volley was saved by Bruno before the foreign import came up with a second effort that found the back off the net after taking a deflection off SESA’s Fernandes.

After the break, a refreshed SESA soon made an impact and found the equaliser just four minutes into the second half. Jaiganesh Goltekar placed the ball to the left of Akhtar following a pass from the left from Israil Gurung.

The goal sparked a flurry of Sporting forays into the rival area but they failed to come up with the finishing touches. Nilendra Dewan shot wide with an empty goal beckoning from close range while Jothi made the mistake of holding on to the ball for too long before hitting straight to Bruno.

However, Sporting found a saviour in Sasmal, who put the Kolkatans decisively ahead in the 73rd. Sasmal pounced on a loose ball after Bruno couldn’t collect a corner kick from the left wing essayed by Eduardo Dasilva Escobar.

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