KGA draw knocks out Don Bosco Kerala, Betalbatim, AVC score victory

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 11: Last season’s champions Don Bosco Oratory made an early exit from the KIFF League when they were held 0-0 by a resolute Kuwait Goan Association, while Kerala Challengers, Real Betalbatim and AVC Sports & Cultural Association won their matches in the 5th week of the ongoing KIFF League. The teams are vying for the prestigious J. P. D’Mello Memorial Rolling Trophy. The games are being played at the MOH Ground in Shuwaikh, Kuwait; organized by the Kuwait Indian Football Federation.
Kuwait Goan Association (KGA) needed only a draw to be the first team to qualify for the quarter-finals and did just that.  A strangely restrained Don Bosco Oratory (DBO) had an off day on the field as KGA not only held their defense well, but also made sporadic attacks on the DBO goal and were unfortunate when a shot by Christovam hit the upright in the 15th minute of the first half.

A desperate DBO knowing a draw would mean their exit tried their best in the second half but erratic shooting and an easy header missed by Alexandro in the second half ended the game goalless. Chrisovam of KGA was declared the Man of the Match and received his award sponsored by Integrated Logistics Company, from the hands of Joseph Gomes, Asst. Sports Secretary of KIFF.  The match was officiated by David and assisted by Francis Fernandes and Julio Cardoso. In the second match, played at 8:15 am, the youthful United Goans Centre were unable to penetrate the Real Betalbatim defense ably led by veteran and captain Theodore Pinto. They went down fighting 1-2 in a thrilling encounter.

Diminutive Elvis opened the scoring for Real Betalbatim in the 10th minute of the first half, while Marshall added a second, soon after that.  United Goans gave it their best and finally scored through Francis in the second half, but could not get the equalizer due to some good keeping by the Real Betalbatim keeper.
Denzil Jadhev of Real Betalbatim was declared the man of the match. He received the award from and Pascoal Alphonso, President of the United Goans Centre.  The match was officiated by Mubarak Yousuf and assisted on the lines by David and Francis. In the battle for leadership in group A, a literally strong Kerala Challengers edged Navelim Y.C (NYC) 2-1 in a fast paced and at times robust match. The NYC playing without their star midfielder Bernardo Pires who is out due to illness could not match the skills of Kerala Challengers in midfield and their forwards led by the charismatic Fajelu missed a number of chances before Fajelu finally scored in the 15th minute of the first half.

In the second half Kerala Challengers kept up the pressure and Jamal made it 2-0 when his beautifully executed free kick found the far corner of the net past the outstretched hands of Britto in the NYC goal.
NYC got one back when a good move from the left flank enabled their goal scoring machine Cruzedio to score in a goalmouth melee. Kerala Challengers however defended well to deny the NYC an equalizer and now top the group with two wins in two games.  Man of the match was Fajelu of Kerala Challengers and the award was given by Lawrence Pinto, President of Rising Stars. The game was officiated by Julio Cardoso assisted by Sarto Baptista and Nicholas on the lines.

In the last match of the day, AVC Sports & Cultural Association easily outclassed Sparks 5-0 in a one sided match which saw the first hat-trick of the tournament. Flamboyant Kevin Vaz finally found his scoring touch when he opened the scoring for AVC with a simple tap and soon made it 2-0 with a fine volley. Braulio scored three more to ensure AVC now top their pool with 4 points from two games and needing just a draw in the last game to qualify. Man of the match was awarded to Braulio the hat-trick man of AVC and given by Adley D’Lima the treasurer of KIFF. The game was officiated by Tiego Fernandes supported by Sarto Baptista and Christopher Fernandes on the lines.

Next Friday matches:
Santos United vs Kerala Challengers at 6:45 am
Indian Strikers vs Real Betalbatim FC at 8:00 am
Navelim Y.C. vs Rising Stars at 9:15 am
Malabar United vs United Goans Centre at 10:30 am

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