Three Star hold champions Manang 2-2 in an enthralling gameRammavra and Bista score a brace for their sides in the stalemate of the giants; Police seal a 2-0 win over Jawalakhel.
Three Star came from behind after failing to protect their lead and settled for a 2-2 draw with defending champions Manang Marshyangdi in their Martyrs Memorial ‘A’ Division League match played at the Dashrath Stadium on Saturday.
Three Star’s Lal Rammavra and Manang’s Anjan Bista scored a brace for their sides in the competitive clash of the titans.
Rammavra put Three Star ahead in the 19th minute after converting a freekick from just outside 18 yards. Manang’s Bista had a similar opportunity from a similar position 12 minutes later, but Three Star goalie Yves Priso thwarted his effort.
Another chance came for Manang’s Bimal Rana four minutes from half-time, but he overshot the crossbar from three yards.
Three Star’s Rammavra also had an opportunity to double his team’s lead at the stoppage time of the first half, but he could not head the ball past MMC goalkeeper Deep Karki.
The defending champions came back strong in the second half and created several chances. They first equalised through Bista’s penalty in the 49th minute. Bista was brought down by Three Star defender Ashok Khawas.
Manang continued to pile pressure after tying the score. Twenty minutes after scoring for his side, Bista put his team ahead with a header which ended in the back of the net after hitting the right post.
Having given up their lead and then falling behind, Three Star finally increased their attacking tempo. Their effort was rewarded with Rammavra’s equaliser in the 83rd minute.
Rammavra converted a rebound from the goalline after Ananta Tamang’s header was denied by Karki.
Three Star coach Megh Raj KC regretted having to settle for a point.
“We could have walked away with three points. We failed to convert some scoring chances,” he said after the match. “Our defence need to be organised in the days ahead. Both goals that we conceded in today’s match were results of defensive lapses.”
Manang’s coach Dhaneshwor Prajapati also identified his team’s backline as the area that needed improvement to uplift their standards.
“The boys played well, but we have a lot of room for improvement in the defending aspect, we are not properly dealing with the crosses that are fired into our area.”
Manang’s winger Bista, who was named man of the match, said that playing on a muddy pitch of the Dashrath Stadium affected the games of both sides,
“The slippery conditions obviously add complications for the players, it was not an ideal condition to play football.”
The draw leaves Manang as the only unbeaten side in the league this season. They are placed third in the standings with 13 points behind Machhindra who are second on goal difference. Three Star are fourth with 11 points, ahead of Nepal Police Club on goal difference.
Nepal Police secured a 2-0 win against Jawalakhel Youth Club in the first match of Saturday. Soujan Rai and Suman Subedi scored for the departmental side.
In Sunday’s fixture, New Road Team will play against Armed Police Force. The second match will be played between Friends Club and Saraswoti Youth Club. Both games will be played at the ANFA Complex in Satdobato.