Zee Churchill beat HAL to surge ahead
Title contenders Goa's Zee Churchill Brothers improved their position in the points
table when they scored a 1-0 victory over debutants Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Bangalore, in a 21st round match in the Tata National Football League in Bangalore on Tuesday.
Churchill, who began their 21st engagement as
favourites, scored the lone goal through Yusif Yakubu in the
Yakub not only suceeded in intercepting a pass from HAL's
Rajendra Prasad, but also made no mistake in shooting into the
net, bringing cheer to his team. In the process, he swelled his goal tally in the tournament to 17 and emerged the highest scorer by a huge margin.
Churchill, who went into the game in an aggressive mood,
kept on raiding the HAL citadel. They floundered a scoring
chance in the eighth minute when captain Roque Barretto's
powerful shot landed in the hands of goalkeeper Gumpe Rime.
Rime brought off two superb saves off Churchill's attempts in
16th minute and 20th minutes when Ratan Singh and Yusif Yakubu
tried to score.
HAL concentrated more on defence rather than attack in the first half. In the second, they made a Herculean effort to find an equaliser, but the Churchil defence and custodion Edward Anash did not oblige.
HAL came near scoring in the 80th minute but Sunil
failed to head a pass from Danair Abdyraimov.
With this win, Churchill increased their points tally to
42 while HAL remained at 25.
During the proceedings, certain decisions of referee
Krishan Avtar came in for protests by the HAL supporters, who
virtually entered into arguements with some Churchill
The wordy duel between the supporters of the two
teams threatended to snowball into a clash after the HAL fans
hurled chairs towards the Churchill supporters. However, police
soon intervened and escorted a few of the Churchill fans out.
When the play ended, the local supporters were still
booing and jeering the referee. However, police escorted him
While Churchill take on another title contender, Mohun
Bagan on home turf at Goa in their last engagement of the
league on April 15, HAL play Mahindra United in Mumbai.
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