Budha Subba Gold Cup: Three Star crowned championsThree Star Club claimed the 20th Budha Subba Gold Cup football tournament title with a 1-0 victory over Nepal Police Club in the final on Saturday.
Three Star Club claimed the 20th Budha Subba Gold Cup football tournament title with a 1-0 victory over Nepal Police Club in the final on Saturday.
Ajayi Martins scored the winner for the Lalitpur-based outfit at the stroke of half time as Three Star avenged the 1-0 loss they suffered a week ago at the hands of the resurgent departmental side during the Aaha-Rara Gold Cup in Pokhara. Both sides had their one player send off due to bookable offence with the game yet to hit half-an-hour mark.
It was the fifth Budha Subba title for Three Star and second after they returned to domestic football following a one-year long hiatus. The title handed Three Star a cash purse of Rs 600,000 and runners-up NPC got Rs 300,000. Three Star coach Meghraj KC said it was the return of hard work his side has put in adding: “We had to play the game under pressure. We are happy that we have taken revenge of the recent loss to them (NPC).”
KC’s NPC counterpart Ananta Thapa termed the game a tough one. “It was a final and it was definitely going to be tough. The boys couldn’t score. We lost the balance of the team after falling one man short,” said Thapa a former captain.
It was NPC who created an early chance in the seventh minute after a powerful shot from Dinesh Bhandari in a corner from Tez hit Lama just outside the goal line. Buddha Lama was close to giving NPC a lead when his shot had already beaten Three Star goalkeeper Alan Neupane but was cleared by the defenders.
The first twist of the game came in the 27th minute when NPC’s Tej Tamang tried to stop Three Star captain Bikram Lama with the midfielder tripping in the ground and breaking his leg. The incident invited dispute and the match referee had to send off Three Star’s Peter Segun and NPC captain Hem Tamang after both players were involved in a scuffle.
Martin then saw his shot hit the woodwork in the 47th minute but the striker found the back of the net few moments later converting his 25-yard shot into a spectacular goal. Both teams had their chances in the second half but final score remained the same.
Three Star midfielder Nirajan Khadka was named the best player and highest scorer. He rode a motorcycle and earned an additional amount of Rs 25,000.
Alan Neupane (goalkeeper), Lawal (defender) and KC (coach) were other individual winners for Three Star. Suman Lama (midfielder) and Rejin Subba (striker) of NPC along with Raman Limbu (emerging player) of Dharan Football Club were other winners. All the individual award winners got Rs 25,000 each.