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 November 17, 2002 | 2115 IST

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East Bengal prevail over Tollygunge

Former champions East Bengal scored once in each half to register a 2-0 victory over Kolkata mates Tollygunge Agragami in their opening match of the Oil PSU-seventh National Football League on Sunday.

S Venkatesh and Mike Okoro, both of whom switched over to East Bengal from ITI this season, found the target in the scrappy and mediocre game at the Salt Lake stadium.

East Bengal, who won the title in 2000-01, dominated the proceedings from the outset but could forge ahead only in the 44th minute, when Venkatesh scored with a right-footer after Doglous D'Silva had done the spadework.

Okoro, who emerged top scorer in the Kolkata Super Division, made the scoreline 2-0 in the 63rd minute, heading home a Sasthi Duley free-kick from the left.

Tollygunge, on the defensive for most part of the 90-minute encounter, came closest to scoring in the 71st minute when an Ashim Biswas grounder, off a Sandip Das through, hit the post, much to the relief of the 5000-odd East Bengal supporters.

The woodwork also stood in the way of an East Bengal strike in the 12th minute when Duley's lob was headed into the crossbar by Venkatesh.

Complete Coverage: 7th National Football League 2002-03