SPORTS

Suva Next for Stallions

Nadroga’s new signing Jitendra Kumar rose to the occasion by scoring their lone goal as they held Singh’s Rental Lautoka to a 1-1 draw at the ANZ Stadium, Suva yesterday.
06 Oct 2016 12:59
Suva Next for Stallions
Nadroga golie Parmesh Prasad fails to stop power short from Lautoka during opening match of 2016 Courts IDC at ANZ Stadium. photo: Ronald Kumar.

Nadroga’s new signing Jitendra Kumar rose to the occasion by scoring their lone goal as they held Singh’s Rental Lautoka to a 1-1 draw at the ANZ Stadium, Suva yesterday.

“The goal was the result of team work and I’m happy about the result,” a jubilant Kumar told SUNsports.

“We will take one match at a time and now we are focused on our next match against Suva.”

Gaining one point has kept the Stallions dream of securing a semi-final berth at the 2016 Courts Inter District Championship alive.

What Happened: Lautoka started strongly as they were highly favoured to win their pool opener with ease. The Blues took the lead within two minutes when Shameel Rao unleashed a stunner from the edge of the Nadroga’s six-yard to put his side up 1-0. Lautoka controlled the match from the tons of possession they had. They played attacking football and missed numerous scoring chances.

A well-disciplined, Nadroga defensive backline managed to withstand Lautoka’s attacking duo of Samuela Drudru and Jone Vono Jnr.

The youthful Stallions responded well after 20 minutes into the first half as they mounted pressure on the Lautoka back four.

A Jeshal Kumar’s well-timed cross from the sideline was met perfectly by his younger brother Jitendra in the penalty box to score the equaliser.

Halftime: Nadroga 1-1 Lautoka

Both teams came back into the second half eager to extend the lead. But it was Nadroga who took the initiative to attack early as Paulo Buke saw his shot from a rebound hit the woodwork.

Nadroga coach Waisea Tale made three changes as they searched for the winning goal.

Referee Avinesh Narayan dished three yellow cards as both teams were under huge pressure in the dying stages of the game.

Big Play: Rao had the chance to score a brace for Lautoka. He was put into the clear but his feeble attempt was saved by Nadroga goalie Parmesh Prasad.

Comments: Lautoka coach Agninesh Prasad said; “We knew that Nadroga will come out strongly in the first game. We’ll go back to the drawing board and we’ll see where we went wrong. We really have to work on our finishing at the moment”.

Nadroga coach Waisea Tale said: “Actually our preparation for this IDC was better than our preparation for the B.O.G, so we were expecting better results and better results is what we have just experienced now. Holding on to a one-all draw is something that we’ll take from this game.

“We wanted to set a platform for this IDC and this is a good platform for us.”

Edited by Leone Cabenatabua

Feedback:  justine.mannan@fijisun.com.fj

 

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