Guwahati, Feb 10 (IANS) India’s U-23 football team stormed into the semi-finals of the South Asian Games (SAG) outclassing the Maldives 3-2 here on Wednesday.

An Udanta Singh brace and a Pritam Kotal strike ensured an Indian win in a topsy-turvy match wherein the Maldives equalised twice, before finally surrendering to India’s attacking prowess. 

India took the lead as early as the 4th minute when Udanta Singh steered clear off the Maldivian defence line and blasted home to give the hosts the lead.

Three minutes later, Udanta Singh once again burst onto the goal but hoofed his shot wide. In the 9th minute, the Maldives equalised against the run of play when Muruthala Adnan scored.

Not to be deterred, the Indian contingent took the charge of the match once again as Pritam Kotal’s thunderous header in the 11th minute gave the home side a 2-1 lead.

With India having the lion’s share of possession, opportunities to extend their lead came in plenty.

In the 31st minute, Udanta dashed onto a vacant left flank, however the forward slipped while positing himself for the final shot. Nine minutes later, it was Jerry tried to extend India’s lead, but his shot deflected off the Maldivian defence line.

In the 42nd minute, Maldives equalised again when Kotal scored an own goal. The match was tied 2-2 at halftime.

India once again surged into lead in the 59th minute through Udanta, who slotted his opportunity cheekily past the Maldivian custodian to make it 3-2.

The Maldivian attack pressed for the equaliser for the third time but the Indian defence line kept them at bay.

  • SHARE

    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

    Related Posts

    With Roles Reversed, How Will Rohit-Dhoni Dynamics Work Out?

    The previous time Kohli and Dhoni were rested, Ajinkya Rahane was assigned the captaincy for the 2015 Zimbabwe tour. Now with Rahane no longer...

    Team spirit is new coach Stoeger’s biggest challenge at Dortmund

    Berlin, Dec 12: New Borussia Dortmund head coach Peter Stoeger won't be the man having to invent a brand new tactical system, but to teach...

    Maradona skips football match, spends time with kids

    Barasat (West Bengal) Dec 12: Argentine football legend Diego Maradona, who was supposed to play a 'Match for Unity on Tuesday against former India cricket...

    Putin allows athletes to compete at Winter Olympics as neutrals

    Moscow, Dec 12: President Vladimir Putin has backed the decision made by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) to clear national athletes for participation in the...

    For any cricketer, playing for India is the ultimate dream says this Indian cricketer

    Mohali, Dec 12: Despite failing the Yo-Yo test, a requisite to make it to the national squad, teenaged all-rounder Washington Sundar on Tuesday justified his...