Abahani win battle of old foes

June 22, 2016

Abahani Limited closed the gap with table toppers Usha Krira Chakra when they beat arch-rivals Mohammedan Sporting Club 4-2 in their crucial Super Six match of Premier Hockey League at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium on Tuesday. With the win, joint-champions Abahani have 29 points from 12 matches, five points behind league leaders Usha while Mohammedan, who returned to the domestic competition after two seasons, were all but out of the title race having 26 points from the same number of outings.
Though Mohammedan enjoyed the lion share of possession throughout the game, Abahani made it a one-sided affair availing most of the chances.
Mohammedan earned the first penalty corner of the match in the 5th minute but the combination of Pakistani Umer Bhutta, Tasvar Abbas and Mohammad Imran failed to convert it.
In the 10th minute, Rasel Mahmud Jimmy exposed the Abahani defence by providing an excellent ball to Umer Bhutta, who could not hit the board from close range in the 10th minute.
Abahani, on the other hand, took the lead against the run of play with the combination of Shafqat Rasool, Moshiur Rahman Biplob and Kasif Ali, who found the back of the net with a drag-and-flick in the 15th minute.
Mohammedan then came close to equal the margin in the 19th minute but Tasver Abbas saw his goal-bound push was cleared by Pakistani Kasif Ali.
Abahani doubled the margin in the 22nd minute with young Razib Das diving to connect a Rumman Sarker’s fierce hit.
After the resumption, Mohammedan were still enjoying the better ball possession and Abahani looked dangerous on the break and Mohammedan goalkeeper Zahid made a nice save in the 42nd minute before Jimmy reduced the margin in the 43rd minute.
But, Abahani again widened the margin to take the match virtually away from Mohammedan as Rumman and Shafqat played a nice one-two before the latter hit the board with a fierce hit inside the circle in the 48th minute.
Mohammedan hit back to make the margin 3-2 with Pakistani Mohammad Irfan converting a penalty stroke in the 58th minute before Razib Das struck his second in the 61st minute to wrap up the win.

-With New Age input

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