Delhi may have registered their third consecutive win in Group-1 of the 76th National Senior Men’s Football Championship being played for the Hero Santosh Trophy on Thursday, but they had to struggle hard to 2-1 win against Uttarakhand in the match played at the Dr Ambedkar Stadium.
Meanwhile, at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Karnataka thrashed Tripura 10-0 to secure their fourth straight win while Gujarat beat Ladakh 2-0.
In the first match of the day played at the Dr Ambedkar Stadium, hosts Delhi took a 2-0 lead in the first half through goals from Mahip Adhikari and Jaideep Singh. At the interval, it looked like Delhi were going to register another big win, but wrong decisions by the team management put the hosts on the defensive.
Its star striker Mahip Adhikari, who scored a hattrick against Gujrat, opened the team’s account by scoring a spectacular goal in the 16th minute. Jaideep Singh scored the second goal for the team in the 45+2nd minute just seconds before the long whistle. Mahip Adhikari and Ajay Singh were replaced in the second half. In place of these two, Fahad Taimuri and Nirmal Singh Bisht were fielded in the 60th minute and the aggressive style of the team was turned defensive. After that, Uttarakhand performed relatively better and came back with a brilliant goal from Sucharu Dabral (68th minute).
After Thursday’s win, Delhi have 10 points from four matches with three wins and one draw and remain second in the Group-1 table. They are two points behind Karnataka, who scored their fourth win today. Four consecutive wins from four matches have taken Karnataka to 12 points and are at the top. Gujarat has moved to the third position with its second win. They have earned six points from four matches with two wins and two losses. After today’s defeat, Uttarakhand has slipped to the fourth position in the table. Uttarakhand has four points from four matches with one win, one draw and two losses. Tripura and Ladakh are placed fifth and sixth respectively with one point each from four matches.
Even though Delhi registered its third win, Karnataka riding on the chariot of victory has definitely created a stir in the Delhi camp by crushing Tripura by ten goals.
On the other hand, in the second match of the day played at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Tripura was seen as a second class team in front of Karnataka. In this one-sided match, Karnataka scored five goals each in the two halves. Shelton Paul M scored two goals in the 2nd and 27th minutes in Karnataka’s victory and Robin Yadav (16th), Prashant Kalinga (30th), M Sunil Kumar (40th), Abhishek Shankar Powar (54th), Appu (78th), Ankit P (81st), Rajaganapati K (86th) and Kamlesh P (90+6) scored one goal each.
In the third match of the day, Gujarat beat Ladakh 2-0. This is Gujarat’s second victory. Jai Kanani scored in the 28th minute and Rutig Ahirrao in the 50th minute in Gujarat’s victory.