Sports Castle, Sankhamul continue unbeaten run in futsal leaugeUnbeaten Sports Castle thrash Jharana Sports Club 5-1 to open a two-point lead over second placed Sankhamul Futsal, also unbeaten, with only three round matches left.
Home City's Sports Castle and Kathmandu's Sankhamul Futsal continued their unbeaten record with wins on Wednesday to strengthen their grip on top two positions at the completion of the sixth round of the ongoing 'A' Division National Futsal League at the Pokhara covered hall.
Sports Castle thrashed bottom-placed Jharana Sports Club 5-1 to move two points clear while Sankhamul were made to battle for a 3-2 win over second from bottom Lumbini Futsal of Rupandehi to reclaim second position, with only three rounds of matches to play before the league wraps up.
"The three points were vital, but we do not have many reasons to be happy," said Sankhamul coach Prakash Pariyar over his side's hard-fought win. "Though we did not take the opponents lightly irrespective of their position on the point table, they also have been playing together for quite a long time."
Lumbini coach Prajwol Shrestha said that his side lacked the winning mentality. "The boys did not play to their potential. The defeat has definitely increased the pressure of relegation. I am hopeful of better performances in the next three matches.
Sports Castle with five wins and a draw have 16 points while Sankhamul with four wins and two draws have 14 points. Five points from remaining three league matches would be sufficient for Sports Castle to secure a top four finish which would guarantee them a place in the qualifier or eliminator rounds. Rupandehi's teams Jharana and Lumbini are languishing at the bottom two places, the relegation zone. Jharana have lost all six fixtures and are pointless while Lumbini have four points.
Sports Castle are yet to play against city rivals Sabin Memorial, Futsal 5 and The Rising Club of Dharan. Shankhamul are scheduled to vie with Machhindra Sky Goals of Kathmandu, Jharana and Sabin Memorial in the next three games.
Sports Castle deputy coach Arwin Gurung said that they were heading in the right direction to finish in the top two positions. "The opponents were not that tough and the boys went into the match with a pressure-free mentality. We also got a comfortable victory. Now our focus will be to improve our performance in every game," said Gurung adding, injuries and insufficient recovery time has taken a toll on his team.
Jharana manager Cjan Thapa said that they would focus on upcoming games rather than the past results. "The players must work hard and we are not worried about defeat. Since our team is from a footballing background, theis tournament provided us with opportunities to learn a lot of things. We will come with more preparations in the next season," said Thapa.
The one-sided affair saw Sports Castle score all five goals before the break against Jharana. Khim Raj Gurung scored a brace while Bijay Gurung, Bihson Gurung and Kishor Gurung scored one goal each. Narayan Thapa Magar hit back the consolation for Jharana in the second half.
In the early kickoff, Bikeh Pandit gave the eighth minute lead to Sankhamul before Rupan Baraili restored parity a minute later. Krijal Khadka restored Sankhamul's lead in the 13th and Sagar Theeng added another during the half hour mark to lead the match 3-1. Raefi Maharjan hit the second for Lumbini in the dying moment.
In the late fixture of the day, Machhindra Sky Goals edged Prabhatpheri Youth Club 4-3 in the Kathmandu-derby to register their third win. They are sixth in the table with nine points while Prabhatpheri are sharing the seventh spot with four points alongside Dhuku FC and Lumbini.