In what can be termed as the most bizarre result of the I-League season thus far, ONGC came out victorious against the Goan giants…An inspired ONGC stunned those present at the Ambedkar Stadium, Delhi with a 3-1 victory over league leaders Dempo SC and thus brought an end to their unbeaten start to the campaign.
Goal from Surabuddin Mollick in the first half saw them surge ahead which was doubled by Jatin Bisht before the hour mark. Peter Carvalho pulled one back for the away side but Eric Brown's late injury time goal rubbed further salt to Dempo's wounds and help his side win their first game in the I-League this season.
Subrata Bhattacharya made one change as Kailash Patil made his way in with Joel Sequeira sitting on the bench.
Armando Colaco was forced to make a change into his lineup as well with the injured Joaquim Abranches left out with Romeo Fernandes making his first start in the I-League this season. Koko Sakibo and Mahesh Gawli were among the experienced players missing from the team due to injuries while Rohan Ricketts was suffering from a bout of food poisoning.
Kailash Patil’s shot in the 12th minute being fisted away by Dempo custodian Subasish Roychowdhury and Surabuddin Mollick was lurking around to slot the ball into an empty net to put the home side into the lead.
Thereafter Dempo launched a barrage of attacks with ONGC lucky to come out unscathed. Ryuji Sueoka saw his shot come off the crossbar after Romeo Fernandes did well to get past at least three opposition players to get in the box in the 24th minute.
Around the half hour mark, Clifford Miranda got into the thick of action as his cross from the left found Sueoka whose shot went wide much to the disappointment of the Dempo bench.
Anthony Pereira attempted a ‘Hand of God’ in the very next minute to score and deservedly entered the referee’s books.
However against the run of play, ONGC were presented with an opportunity to double their lead as Surabuddin spurned from a one-on-one chance in the 33rd minute.
Romeo was easily the most impressive Dempo player in the first half as he kept attacking the opposition defenders with his tricky runs and was unlucky to see his shot from outside the box just fly over the bar. In the 42nd minute, he saw his shot come off the crossbar which further frustrated Colaco’s side.
The first opportunity in the second half fell to Dempo as Rowilson Rodrigues’ header went wide of the post from a Clifford Miranda corner-kick in the 48th minute.
Four minutes later, Kailash Patil’s brilliant through-ball to Katsumi Yusa only needed to be slotted past the Dempo goalkeeper which he failed to do so.
Jatin Bisht made it 2-0 in the 57th minute as the Dempo defenders were guilty of giving him far too much space to manoeuvre. It was Surabuddin who had found Bisht with a delightful pass and the latter scored a scorcher from outside the box giving Subasish no chance whatsoever.
Dempo soon responded with Peter Carvalho slotting the ball home from a Clifford Miranda cross in the 61st minute.
The Goan side made a couple of changed which saw Godwin Franco and Joy Ferrao make their way in but hardly made any notable impact.
It was ONGC who twice came close to adding to their one-goal advantage with Katsumi Yusa’s attempt saw Subhasish came up with a brilliant save to keep the scoreline intact in the 85th minute. Eric Brown’s free-kick a minute later just about missed the target by not much.
It was Eric Brown who put the final nail in the coffin in the 98th minute as he added his name on the scoresheet with substitute Keniston providing the assist.
With this result, Dempo have 13 points from six games while ONGC have moved to the tenth spot with six points from five outings.
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