Jeppiaar IT FC registered a 3-2 win over bottom placed Aizawl FC in a pulsating encounter, which saw five goals scored in the first half of the match, of the inaugural edition of the Indian Women’s League (IWL) at the Ambedkar Stadium in the Capital today (February 3, 2017).
Sandhiya’s fifth minute strike assisted by Pradeepa’s quick fire brace (16’,17’) led Jeppiaar to a hard fought win after Elizabeth’s brace (11’, 30’) for Aizawl FC gave them a run for their money.
The game got off to a flying start and Jeppiaar FC scored as early as the 5th minute to set the tone for an end-to-end clash when Sandhiya slotted the ball with ease past an onrushing custodian to give Jeppiaar the lead, after she was found clear of the defensive mix.
Aizawl FC wasted little time to recuperate and six minutes later equalized their deficit when Elizabeth tapped home from handshaking distance. However, Jeppiaar FC’s forward Pradeepa had other plans and scored two goals in two minutes to give Jeppiaar the upper hand in the match.
First, in the 16th minute Pradeepa calmly steered clear of the opposition defence, latched onto a through ball, and scored from a tight angle to make it 2-1. A minute later, she capitalized on a defensive howler and chipped the opposition goalkeeper to extend Jeppiaar’s lead as the scoreline read 3-1.
Stunned, Aizawl FC launched attacks, whilst relying on the pace upfront to do the damage. In the 30th minute, Aizawl FC reaped benefits of their pacy forwards as Bwaitlung steamed to latch onto a long ball and squared it off for an onrushing Elizabeth, who tapped it home.
Aizawl FC could have restored parity in the 40th minute had Chawngthu made a decent connection to a half volley following a cross from inside the box with no real pressure. The half-time scoreline read 3-2 in Jeppiaar’s favour.
The second half was contrasting from the first as both Teams vied for possession leading to a constant battle in the midfield. While Aizawl FC tried to launch attacks, Jeppiaar FC’s defence thwarted the danger away.
Meanwhile, Jeppiaar FC found regular leaks in the Aizawl FC defence through counter attacks, but chances were seldom finished.
Even after fostering goal scoring chances, Aizawl FC failed to make them count and paid the price as Jeppiaar FC’s adopted a defensive stance to see out the game. The full-time scoreline read 3-2 in Jeppiaar FC’s favour.
(Report & Photo courtesy: AIFF Media)