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18 April, 2019 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 18 April, 2019 02:16:47 AM
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AFC Cup qualifiers

Abahani, Minarva share points

Sports Reporter, Dhaka
Abahani, Minarva share points

Needing to have full three points to remain strongly on the race to cross the preliminary stage of the AFC Cup, Abahani Limited shared points at their home ground with Minarva Punjab of India after coming from a goal behind yesterday.

Held at the Bangabandhu National Stadium, Nabib Newaz Jibon and Sunday scored for the hosts Abahani while Mahmoud Al Amna and Shryas scored a piece for the visitors Minarva Punjab. After drawing the match Abahani accumulated four points from two encounters when Minarva Punjab managed two points from as many matches.

The match was kicked off with some good paces with the visitors were in offensive attitude and came lose to score in the very second minute with their captain Mahmoud Al Amna curled a right footer from outside the box but with equal brilliance Abahani keeper Sohel punched it for a corner. Hosts Abahani took five minutes time to response and organised a move down the right and won a corner but could not make any threat, as an ordinary low right flank by Waly Faisal kick easily cleared by a defender.

Minarva Punjab, looked more disciplined to put pressure on hosts and also took two consecutive attempts on 12th and 17th minute while converted one.

This time Abahani looked a bit under pressure and defenders could not deal with Minarva forwards moves as their men marking were very poor and captain Mahmoud Al Amna superbly exercised his power taking the advantage of defense lapse beating Abahani custodian Shahidul Alam Sohel from inside the box on 17th (1-0).

Abahani immediately bounced back with superb tempo and were closer to have the equaliser in the next minute of conceding the goal when a Masih Saighani effort narrowly went out.

This time Abahani earned a free kick from right side of Minarva area and on a pin-pointed set piece from Jibon back header of Masih narrowly missed the cross bar.

But the host did not lose their rhythm and took only two minutes to level the margin with initiating strong attacks through the left side with indomitable Kervens Fils Belfort was just smashing the opponents defense making threats.

The Haitian forward Belfort entered into the danger area with a solo effort after edging past his markers and made the final pass for onrushing Jibon, who was just a hand-shaking distance to the goal-line and had no trouble to push the ball into net (1-1).

It was hard to imagine that Abahani could not mark the target from three repeated attempts and frequently raided  Minarva defence line. Belfort brilliantly beat the defenders and made a terrific through pass on an open space, Sunday Chizoba ran faster and received the ball.

Sunday, who was not looked on his pick on the day had the Minarva custodian one on situation but shot the ball on his body, on returned ball Jibon took chance but hit the a defender Rubel took the last effort which went over the bar rather than into the open net.

Failing to utilise the easy opportunity Abahani conceded another goal when it was simply a gifted by goalkeeper Sohel and Raihan when Indian substitute forward Sreyas took the possession and did not miss to fire home to restore the lead on 42nd minute (2-1).

Hosts Abahani trailing the first half by 1-2 resumed the second half with more aggressive approach and again levelled the arrear on 48th minute.

Fabricating a quick move down the right wing, went nearer to the box and won another free kick some five yards to D-box. Experienced Waly Faisal was about to have equaliser from his free kick but his effort denied by the cross bar but closely waiting Sunday pushed the ball into net (2-1).

Rest of the time also Abahani opened had better scoring opportunities but due to the forwards’ failures the Bangladesh Premier League champions fail to leave with full three points but to be convinced with one point.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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