East Bengal got a huge monkey off their back, beating Bukit Jalil Sports School of Malaysia 3-1 to avoid the wooden spoon in the Nike Manchester United Premier Cup (MUPC) at Carrington, Manchester onÂ Friday.
The squad now plays Central United of New Zealand for the 17th-18th place and even if they go down in the classification tie, they would go home having bettered arch-rival Mohun Bagan, who finished last in the previous edition of the premier 20-team under-15 tournament.
For the side that went into the match with four defeats in a row, Suprovan (4th minute) opened the account before Ajoy struck a brace, while the Malaysians reduced the margin through Fauzan who converted a penalty.
Smarting from a string of heavy defeats, East Bengal had nothing to lose and the Kolkata outfit started well, managing two corners in the first four minutes, the second yielding the first goal of the tournament for them.
Joydev's stunning volley was blocked by the Malaysian goalkeeper but the ball was not out of danger and Suprovan pounced on it to slot it home from close quarters to bring cheers to the East Bengal camp (1-0).
Having tasted blood, East Bengal went all out for a second goal, which was just three minutes away. Suprovan got a long clearance on the right flank and set it up for Ajoy with a defence-splitting pass, which the forward fumbled a little before pushing it past the custodian (2-0).