Eastern Sporting Union defeated SETHU FC 2-0 in extra time after the full-time scoreline read 0-0 in the semi-finals of the second edition of the Hero Indian Women’s League (IWL) at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Shillong, Meghalaya today to set up a clash with Rising Student Club in the final on April 14, 2018.
A drab and slow first half saw both teams testing each other out and chances came few for either. In a tactical battle in the midfield, neither team was able to cajole a clear goal scoring opportunity nor was able to test the maximum abilities of the opposing custodians, as both goalkeepers had an easy first half, mopping up casual shots that came from distance.
The only highlight of the first half was in the 25th minute when Mandakini Devi found the back of the net through a sweet chip over the onrushing custodian but the referee called the play offside.
Both teams went into the tunnel on level pegging at half-time as the scoreline read 0-0.
Changing over, and ESU maintained pressure on the SETHU FC defence line, constantly bombarding them with attacks. In the 68th minute, Prameshwori Devi’s shot from distance hit the SETHU FC defence line and prompted her to appeal for a handball inside the box, but the referee thought otherwise.
Playing compactly, SETHU FC relied on counter-attacks and their defence line cleared dangerous long balls attempted by ESU. In the 76th minute, Prameshwori Devi found Roja Devi in the box, but the latter’s shot lacked venom and easily mopped up by the opposition goalkeeper.
In the 85th minute, Roja Devi missed a sitter when she failed to tap-in from close range after Prameshwori Devi’s low cross found her inside the box. Two minutes later at the other end, Indumathi failed to make the most out her opportunity after she ran clear of the ESU defence line, but shot wide of goal.
The full-time scoreline read 0-0 as the match progressed to extra time. In the 99th minute the deadlock was finally broken when Prameshwori Devi stepped up and did her chance justice, smashing the ball into the back of the net to give ESU a solitary goal lead.
In the 105th minute, Mandakini Devi scored directly from a free-kick to double ESU’s lead over SETHU FC and put the tie to bed as the scoreline read 2-0.
The full-time scoreline read the same as ESU progressed to the finals where they will face Rising Student Club on April 14, 2018.