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 April 24, 2002 | 1932 IST

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Dempo, Air India score easy wins

Air India, Mumbai, kept alive their chances of promotion to the first division when they thrashed Indian National Football Club, Delhi, 4-1 in a fifth round match in the Second Division National Football League (final phase) in Pondicherry on Wednesday.

With three points from this match, Air India's tally soared to 10 while INFC are yet to open their account, having lost all their encounters.

In the second match of the evening, Dempo Sports Club, Goa, extend their winning streak, outplaying Bhratri Sangha, Kolkata, 2-0.

Dempo are on top of the league table with 15 points.

Bhratri Sangha, with just three points, and INFC, with an all-loss record, are out of contention for the promotion.

In a well-contested encounter, Dempo shot into the lead in the 20th minute when defender Stanley Colaso found the net. Goalkeeper A Mondol punched a free-kick, but the ball landed near an unmarked Colaso, who latched on to the opportunity and slammed home.

After the goal, exchanges were almost even. But the Kolkata side had a narrow escape when Mondol managed to save a powerful right-footer by sameer in the 37th minute.

The teams crossed over with Dempo leading 1-0.

In the 75th minute, Dudu scored from a rebound after William Abekka initiated a move. Abekka collected the ball and ran down the flank. His shot hit the crosspiece and rebounded. Dudu made no mistake to give his team a 2-0 victory.

In the earlier match, Air India shot into the lead in the 16th minute when Anthony Fernandes found the net following a combined move between Tomba Singh and Samson Singh.

The airmen were 2-0 up in the 25th minute, thanks to a self goal. In a goal mouth melee, Samson Singh kicked the ball, which deflected off the foot of Gurjinder Singh and entered the INFC goal.

They found the net again in the 28th minute again when Fernandes scored from a pass from T K Singh from the left flank.

Their last goal came in the 35th minute when S Jathanna scored off a pass from Tomba Singh.

Air India could have won by a bigger margin had they not missed three easy chances in the first 25 minutes of the second session. Anthony Fernandes was guilty of muffing two of those opportunities.

The consolation goal for the losers came in the 75th minute when Cassuis bulged the net off a pass from Arjinder Singh.

Second Division National Football League 2001-2002 - the complete coverage