Himalayan Sherpa march into semis


DHARAN, Feb 8: Himalayan Sherpa Club of Kathmandu entered the semifinals of the 12th International Tuborg Budha Subba Gold Cup Invitational Football Tournament on Monday by defeating United Kurseong FC of Darjeeling 3-0.

Himalayan had entered the quarterfinals as a replacement for NRT which did not participate in the tournament despite getting a bye.

Bharat Khawas, Diyalo Rahim and Utsav KC contributed a goal each for Himalayan.

Despite playing an offensive game from the beginning, Himalayan opened their account only in the 41st minute. Khawas scored a one-versus-one with the goalie in a pass set by Diyalo.

In the 79th minute, Diyalo doubled the lead utilizing Dinesh Karki´s pass while Himalayan´s captain Utsav sealed the match in injury time. Utsav converted a penalty shot which Himalayan were awarded after Kurseong´s Sonam Bhutia brought down Bharat.

Kurseong, which put up a good performance in their previous match against Pokhara XI on Saturday could not keep up the pace against Himalayan. Kurseong couldn´t make any impressive post attempts in the entire game.

They missed a good opportunity in the 29th minute as Nagen Lama could not catch up with the ball that Himalayan´s goalkeeper Dashrath Adhikari dropped from his hand.

Meanwhile, Himalayan couldn´t convert about a dozen good opportunities. Jagajit Shrestha´s shot hit the bar and bounced back in the 47th minute.

Jagajit was later adjudged man-of-the-match.

Kurseong´s coach Dinkar Chhetri said they couldn´t perform their best as two strikers were injured. "Our strikers Nagen Lama and Amir Lama got injured while playing against Pokhara XI," he said.

Himalayan Sherpa´s coach Nirmal Lama expressed happiness for winning the match despite lack of good preparation.

Tuesday´s match will be held between the defending champions Nepal Police Club and ANFA U-16. The winners of Tuesday´s match will face Himalayan Sherpa on Friday.

Support from Norway

Dharan FC´s former footballer Kendra Limbu provided Rs 95,000 to be spent by the club for the Budha Subba Gold Cup, according to the club.

"Out of the received amount, Rs 75,000 will be provided to the runners-up, Rs 5,000 each for two emerging stars while the remaining amount will be used to buy tracksuits for the club´s footballers," said Subash Rai, president of Dharan FC.

Rai also said that Limbu has pledged to provide Rs 50,000 each year to award Dharan Tara prize to rising players.

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