Santosh Trophy: West Bengal pip Chandigarh after late goal in lung opener; Goa off to winning start
A late goal by substitute SK Faiaz guided West Bengal to a lone-goal win over Chandigarh in the opening match of the 71st Santosh Trophy football tournament at Navelim in Goa on Sunday.
Navelim, Goa: A late goal by substitute SK Faiaz guided West Bengal to a lone-goal win over Chandigarh in the opening match of the 71st Santosh Trophy football tournament at Navelim in Goa on Sunday.
The all-important goal was scored in the 90th minute when Sannik Murmu split the defence with a through pass to substitute Faiaz, who raced down, and beat the rival goalkeeper Harptritpal Singh with a low shot to the far corner of the net after entering the box.
Play was confined to midfield for most part of the match which saw few goal-bound moves.
West Bengal, who had better ball possession in the first half, looked more thrustful in their attack and had the first chance to take the lead, but Moirangthem Basanta directed the ball straight to Harpritpal in the 15th minute.
West Bengal kept pressuring, and had another chance to forge ahead five minutes later, but the Chandigarh keeper once again came to his side's rescue when he blocked Rana Gharami's stiff shot.
After the change of ends, Chandigarh improved their game by several notches and had a clear chance to score five minutes before the end, but Amandeep Singh, who was found free inside the box, saw his shot missed the target narrowly.
West Bengal retaliated and scored the winner just before the final whistle.
In another match, Goa began their campaign with a 2-1 victory over Meghalaya at Bambolim.
All three goals came in a four-minute spell of attacking display from both sides in the second half.
Latesh Mandrekar broke the deadlock four minutes into the second session and Liston Colaco doubled the advantage two minutes later.
Enestar Malngiang scored from a free-kick in the 53rd minutes to pull one back for the Northeastern team.
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