SOURCE: SANTOSH POKHAREL
POKHARA, Jan 19: Newly promoted Himalayan Shrepa Club started their Aaha Gold Cup Football Tournament campaign with a win on Wednesday. Himalayan Sherpa defeated the U-19 team of ANFA Academy 2-0 to secure a place in the quarterfinals.
Deepak Rai and Oryek Allan, the new signing of Himalayan Sherpa, scored a goal each during the first half to seal the win. Himalayan Sherpa had signed Ugandan forward Allan on Monday.
Himalayan Sherpa will now take on Three Star Club, the British Gurkha Cup winners, for a place in the last four on Sunday.
Rai, who was adjudged man of the match, opened the scoring for Himalayan Sherpa in the 30th minute when he met a cross of Nabin Neupane. Allan doubled the advantage 13 minutes later in a pass of Jagjeet Shrestha.
Despite coming under pressure from Himalayan Sherpa, who had fielded two foreign players including Tanzanian midfielder Castory D Mumbara in their squad, the young guns of ANFA created a few chances but could not utilize them. Samir Limbu´s strike in the second half could not find the target.
Himalayan Sherpa also squandered some scoring opportunities.
Himalayan Sherpa coach Upendra Man Singh said that the inclusion of two foreigner players made it easy for them to achieve victory. He also pointed out that weak build was a major drawback for their opponents.
ANFA coach Sunil Shrestha commented that his side failed to play up to his expectations. "The players´ slow pace, weak build and lack of match experience were the main causes of the defeat," Shrestha said.
Manang Marshyangdi Club will take on Armed Police Force (APF) on Thursday.