Abahani Limited finally put an end to Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club’s unbeaten run in the league to regain top spot while Sheikh Russell KC were easy winners over Muktijoddha Sangsad KC in the Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League on Wednesday.
Jamal’s unbeaten run included seven wins and four draws prior to their game against Abahani at the Bangabandhu National Stadium but the Sky-Blues registered a hard-fought 1-0 win to reach the summit of the standings and end Sheikh Jamal’s unbeaten run in the process.
Meanwhile away at the Sheikh Fazlul Haque Moni Stadium in Gopalganj, Sheikh Russell remained within a touching distance of the league leaders courtesy of a 2-0 win against Muktijoddha.
Abahani are on top with 27 points from 12 games, closely followed by Russell and Jamal, who are both level on 25 points from 11 and 12 matches respectively. Russell are second though, courtesy of a better goal difference.
Muktijoddha are a disappointing sixth with 15 points from 12 games, after suffering their fifth defeat in the top flight.
In the crucial encounter between Abahani and Jamal, Shakhawat Hossain Rony scored the all-important goal in the 20th minute, his sixth of the season – the highest by a local player.
Rony collected the ball from an Awudu Ibrahim pass on the edge of the box and dribbled past Nasiruddin before placing the ball at the far post to give Abahani the lead.
In the first game of the day in Gopalganj, defender Rezaul Karim Reza gave Sheikh Russell the lead in the 44th minute, while midfielder Tarik El Janaby doubled the score in the 73rd minute to present Russell with a much-needed three points.
Abahani coach Ardeshir Pournemat was visibly ecstatic after the game while speaking to the reporters.
‘It was a big win for us because of the opponents (Sheikh Jamal) as they are a good side, they have good players and a good coach,’ said the Abahani coach. ‘The win gave us full three points but it is six points to me considering the opponents and I will love the boys if they give such efforts in the next match against Sheikh Russell KC.’
Joseph Afusi, coach of Sheikh Jamal, however, refused to give any excuses for the defeat.
‘One mistake, one goal and the game is over. Actually we could not play well and it can happen in football,’ said Afusi.
-With New Age input