Anil Gurung 'missed' as NRT lose to APF


KATHMANDU, Jan 2: Armed Police Force registered a 2-1 victory over New Road Team (NRT) on Saturday during their Group D match of the ongoing British Gurkha Cup at the Dasharath Stadium.

NRT featured five national team players in their starting line-up but could not impress their fans. APF stunned NRT in the seventh minute of the match as Milan Rai scored from the box without giving goalkeeper Surendra Shrestha a chance to thwart it. Milan got the opportunity to score as NRT defenders Nabin Naupane and Sagar Thapa could not clear a long pass by APF captain Jibesh Panday.

Two minutes later, APF created another impressive move. However, Sagar Thapa managed to clear the ball from touchline following a bicycle kick by Top Bahadur Bista.

The star-studded NRT were suffering from the absence of their in-form striker Anil Gurung, who recently joined Indian club Shillong Lajong. NRT started with striker Nirajan Rayamajhi but he could not penetrate APF´s defense line.

NRT could not create other effective moves in the first half. However, they were able to foil some effective moves of APF.

APF continued to impress their fans in the later half. In the 63rd minute, Bhim Shrestha´s attempt hit the bar. However, APF won a corner kick in that move. Dhan Bir Chaudhary with a superb header guided Durga Lawat´s corner ball into NRT´s net to double APF´s lead.

NRT tried to come back in the last 30 minutes and achieved first success in the 76th minute of the match. Substitute striker Bijaya Majhi, who replaced Nirajan Rayamajhi, scored through a header in a free kick by Ranjit Shrestha.

In the dying minutes of the match, NRT attacked and APF produced some excellent counter attacks. In the stoppage time, Jibesh Panday, Ganesh Lawati and Kumar Thapa targeted shots in a single move but Sagar Thapa eventually cleared the ball.

APF´s Coach Maheshwar Mulmi claimed that the absence of striker Anil Gurung in NRT´s squad gave them chance to dominate the star-studded NRT.

NRT´s Coach Diken Suwal said that he did not get time to set the team. He also admitted that the team lacked strikers. "We missed Anil today," said Diken.

In the first match of the day, Sankata Club defeated Western Region team 1-0.

Sankata got the chance to take the lead an early as in the fourth minute of the match. As Ajay Poudel fouled Nirajan Malla inside the box, Sankata were awarded a penalty shot. Nevertheless, Western´s goalkeeper Amrit Chaudhary saved Sunil Subedi´s spot kick.

Sankata scored the lone goal of the match in the 26th minute. Sankata´s captain Kailash Dangol scored from 30 yards in a wonderful free kick. Western Region made two attempts to score but the assistant-referees ruled those attempts as offside.

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