মঙ্গলবার, ২৯ সেপ্টেম্বর, ২০০৯

Rahmatganj shine on return


Citycell Federation Cup09

Thankfully the rain that loomed large stayed away and the Citycell Federation Cup resumed after a 14-day break under brilliant sunshine at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday. With the heavyweight still holidaying it was a day that belong to the lightweights. Rahmatganj Muslim Friends Society, better known as a boggy of big teams, were back to business with a 3-1 thrashing of Chittagong Mohammedan Sporting Club. The victory of the old town outfit by a margin that they had scripted in their first game against Arambagh brightened their chances of playing the quarterfinals of the season's curtain-raiser from Group B.In the other match at the same venue newcomers Shukhtara Jubo Sangsad of Narayanganj tasted first victory when they handed Arambagh a 2-1 defeat. The defeat certainly served a deadly blow for Arambagh coach Wazed Gazi, who promised a lot on his return to his former club but after two defeats in a row faces early eliminating from the competition.In the day's second match, Rahmatganj's Ghanaian recruit Raphael Sagno, Ugandan Idris Kasirye and local boy Mamun put their names in the score sheet while Akber Hossain Ridon struck the consolation goal for the losers. Rahmatganj's coach Mir Mohammad Faruque employed five defenders like he did in the first game against Arambagh. But the defence had little to do in a match where Rahmatganj were in a rampant mood with their African striking duo of Idris and Raphael in full fury.The margin could have been bigger had not Chittagong Mohammedan goalkeeper Uttam Borua made some brilliant saves.Rahmatganj created huge pressure in the first 15 minutes and went close to taking the lead thrice, but Uttam denied them twice while Mamun drove miles off the target from a vantage position.Uttam's resistance was finally broken when Idris nodded a Raphael header home inside the eight-yard box in the 29th minute and seven minutes later Raphael doubled the margin against his former club with a soft touch after being freed by Choumrin Rakhine.Chittagong Mohammedan rarely threatened the Rahmatganj territory. Ridon, who struck twice against Shukhtara, however pulled one back five minutes before the break with a spectacular shot from the top of the box. Rahmatganj made the contest all but over when Mamun struck the third from a rebound five minutes into the second half after a Raphael header came off the sidebar.Chittagong staged a late rally but after a Farhad header rattled the crossbar and goalkeeper Himel saved a close-range shot from substitute Kamrul Islam Pavel a defeat was written in the wall.Rahmatganj now need a draw in their last match against Shukhtara Jubo Sangsad to advance in the knockout stage. In the day's first match, Mehdi Hasan Tapu gave Shukhtara an 18th minute lead but their joy lasted only eight minutes as veteran striker Alfaz Ahmed, capitalizing on a terrible defensive error, blasted home the equalizer. After the resumption, Saiful Islam Khokon sealed the fate of the match with a spectacular side volley.

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