Police strengthen title dream; BUC beat Friends


KATHMANDU, April 21: Defending champions Nepal Police Club continued with their unbeaten run to extend their lead at the top of the table to seven points. Police defeated Ranipokhari Corner Team (RCT) 2-0 on Wednesday to strengthen their title dream in the Martyrs Memorial San Miguel A Division League Football at the Dasharath Stadium.

In another match, relegation battlers Boys Union Club registered second victory of the league and first victory after 11 matches defeating NIBL Friends Club 3-2. Earlier they had defeated Machhindra Club 1-0 in the first leg and lost 2-1 to Friends.

After the completion of the 15th round, Police have earned 35 points, seven ahead of second placed Three Star with seven matches left. RCT remained unchanged in seventh spot with 20 points in their account.

Boys Union climbed one step from the bottom in the 12-team contest with eight points pushing Sankata to the bottom while Friends retained eighth spot with 20 points.

A goal in either half from Rabin Shrestha and Jumanu Rai sealed victory for Police who had played a 1-1 draw with RCT in the first leg.

Shrestha gave an 18th minute lead through a 25-yard freekick to Police. Rai doubled the advantage in the third minute of the second half through a brilliant one touch strike from the box in a cross supplied by Chetan Ghimire. Rai scored his seventh goal of the season.

RCT made a good start and dominated the initial stage of the match. But they failed to continue with the tune after conceding the first goal. RCT could make only a couple of impressive attacks but all in vain as they none of them were fired on target. During the last moment Ghimire and Rai each missed one scoring opportunity. Rai failed to send the ball past the net in a one-on-one with goalie Dilip Chhetri.

Delighted with the win Police coach Birat Krishna Shrestha said being the leaders and the defending champions they were under pressure to win. He lauded his team as “unified and mentally fit”.

RCT coach Madhu Karki said that they came under pressure after unexpectedly conceding the first goal. He, however, expressed satisfaction towards his team´s performance.

In another match, to end their victory quest Jeetu Rana and Tanka Basnet netted one each for Boys Union while Krishna Lama of Friends hit the second goal in his own post. Buddha Chemjong and substitute Santosh Tamang pulled back one each for Friends who have collected only one point out of all four matches of the second leg.

To open the scoring in the 18th minute, Rana volleyed brilliantly from the inner line of the box for Boys Union. The second goal came as a gift from the Friends side as their defender Lama´s easy back pass to goalie Sagar Gurung entered the net after Gurung failed to clear the slow moving ball. Basnet added a third to take the match to 3-0. Basnet chipped over an advancing goalie from the box.

Friends´ attempt to make a comeback could not materialize as they fell short of a goal. Chemjong fired a superb left flank shot to give a dim hope to Friends, who have been going through a lean phase in the second leg, to open their scoring in the 69th minute. Substitute Tamang scored another 10 minutes from time as Boys Union custodian failed to judge the spinning ball properly.

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