From Abu Hanifa
NAGAON, Sept 20 – Assam Rifles soccer team emerged champions in the 62nd edition of the Independence Day Cup Football Tournament.
In the mediocre title clash, Riflemen rallied to beat Royal Wahingdu Club of Shillong 2-1 in extra time at the Nurul Amin Stadium here today.
After a lacklustre and dry first session, Malswam Tluanga put the Shillong team ahead in the 78th minute. But their jubilation was short lived as Bulu Jigdung fired the equaliser in the 84th minute. The final nail to the Royal Wahingdu coffin was hammered by Rifle striker L Kima with a beautiful goal scored in the 104th minute.
In the later part of the regulation time and the extra 30 minutes, the momentum of the game was increased to a remarkable height after the ball was moving mostly in the midfield during the regulation time, particularly in the first half.
Both the teams made some feeble attempts in the regulation 90 minutes but the strikers were poor in shooting at the goal.
M Thunguamala of the Shillong team was adjudged best player of the final, while spectators vote for the best player went in favour of Rifleman Bulu Jigdung. He also received the highest scorer’s award.
In the closing function, State Forest Minister and president of the Nagaon Sports Association Rockybul Hussain handed over the champions trophy and Rs 1 lakh to the Assam Rifles team, while Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister BM Lanong gave away the runners-up trophy to the Shillong outfit. They also became richer by Rs 50,000. The SSB team of Siliguri was handed the best disciplined team award.