NRT holds RCT; Bauddha, Swayambhu share points

KATHMANDU, June 24: New Road Team (NRT) came from behind twice and held Ranipokhari Corner Team (RCT) at 2-2 draw in the Martyrs Memorial Red Bull A Division League on Friday while Bauddha Football Club and Swayambhu Club played a goalless draw at the Halchowk Ground.

With the drawn results, NRT is on the fourth place with 27 points while RCT is seventh on the points table with 21 points. Bauddha is at the eighth position with 20 points from 13 games while Swayambhu is struggling to escape relegation as it has the 16th position and five points in its account. 

In the first match of the day, RCT dominated the first half. Amar Dangol scored the first goal for RCT in the 38th minute. NRT goalkeeper Raju Yogi could not grab the ball in a strike of Shekhar Limbu from the edge and Dangol utilized the ball and scored from the box.

NRT´s Olensile Sulaiman made a goal line clearance to the Alexis Likeng´s header as he met a corner off Ntolo Ngoumou in the 42nd minute.

“We could not hold ball in the first half. The first half was a total failure for our side but after we substituted two players (Sushil KC and Ram Krishna GC were taken off and Ashim Jung Karki and Olayinka Edris were sent in respectively), we played better in the second half,” said NRT coach Raju Shakya.

Bishnu KC leveled the score five minute into the second half. KC headed home from the close range as he met a flick off Aaron Blackie Cole, who met Rakesh Lama´s 20-yard free-kick.

However, Dangol again put up RCT ahead in the match five minutes later. Dangol volleyed from the line utilizing a short pass from Bhim Darlami.

In the 76th minute Cole leveled the match for NRT as he tapped in a cross from Ashim Jung Karki.

“Our defense line-up was rock solid in the earlier matches but they are losing confidence since the last three matches. We are scoring goals but eventually conceding goals,” said RCT Coach Madhu Karki.

NRT coach Shakya said that he is confident about qualifying for the upcoming National League finishing the current league within top eight positions. “NRT will now vie for fourth position on the league table,” said Shakya. RCT Coach Karki also claimed to finish the ongoing league on top eight.

Meanwhile, Swayambhu goalkeeper Emanual´s heroics held Bauddha in a goalless stalemate in the second match of the day.

Emanual denied Rajesh Shahi´s close range shot in the 14th minute and did same to a 25-yard free kick off Uttam Gurung in the 25th minute. In the injury time of the second half, he again made a spectacular save to Khum Gurung´s shot.

Bauddha´s Eugene Gray and Uttam Gurung hit woodworks in the 44th and the 53rd minutes during the course of the match.

“It was our bad luck not to score despite dominating the match. The rain played spoilsports for us. The draw made our target of finishing in top eight a tough task,” said Bauddha coach Kiran Shrestha.

Swayambhu coach Bikram Lama lamented that midfield could not perform their role for the team but still hoped to fend off relegation.

League Postponed

Matches of the ongoing Martyrs Memorial Red Bull A Division League are postponed till July 4 since Nepal is preparing for the World Cup Qualifying matches against East Timor.

All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) had scheduled matches between Friends Club and Army Club as well as Mega Three Star and Nepal APF Club for Saturday but as the national team started its closed camp training from Thursday the matches have been shifted for July 4.

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