Easy wins for Tripura,
Tripura, Sikkim and Karnataka posted convincing victories while Bihar and Punjab sailed past their
opponents by narrow margins in preliminary round league
matches in the 58th National Football Championship, for the Santosh
Trophy, in Imphal on Monday.
Riding on a double strike by Ranjit Singh Baruah, Tripura
blanked Gujarat 4-1 in a cluster seven encounter while Sikkim
trounced Uttar Pradesh 3-0 in cluster six.
In another cluster seven match, Karnataka breezed past
Punjab and Bihar managed to beat Madhya Pradesh and
Andhra Pradesh respectively by a solitary goal in cluster three and five
The engagement between Nagaland and Delhi in cluster
eight ended in a 1-1 draw.
Tripura, looking desperate to make up for its 1-4 defeat
against Karnataka in last outing, went on the rampage right
from the kick-off and got an early lead through Swapan Rai in
the 10th minute.
Striving to win by a big margin, Tripura stepped up
the attack in the second half. The tactics paid off as Sambhu
Rai and Baruah found the target in the 48th and 53rd minutes.
Ranjit Sisotiya gave a life line to Gujarat in the 56th
minute but his strike was soon followed by another goal by
Baruah that made the final score 4-1.
The cluster six encounter between Sikkim and UP ended on
expected lines with the latter showing no improvement upon its
performance following the 0-5 defeat against Services in the
Complete Coverage: Santosh Trophy 2002