Rani Pokhari Corner Team (RCT) defeated Nayabasti Yuva Club 4-2 in a thrilling first match of the Martyr's Memorial 'B' Division League match on Thursday.
Divine Boys Union Club thrashed Jhamsikhel Youth Club 4-0 in another match of the day.
In the first match, Ajit Gurung opened the scoring for RCT in the sixth minute. Ganesh Hamal levelled for Nayabasti in the 19th. Nayabasti took the lead in the 50th minute only for Suren Khawas to equalize for RCT in the 67th minute. The equalizer came after RCT were awarded an indirect free-kick from inside the box after Nayabasti's goalkeer Bikesh Shrestha was penalized for holding the ball for more than six seconds.
A minute later, RCT's Ashish Chapagain was shown a straight red for a foul on Basanta Ojha. Nayabasti upped the pressure but a spirited RCT found the net through Bishwo Thapa seven minutes from full time. Gurung added a fourth for RCT three minutes later to complete the victory for the team.
RCT coach Sulav Jung Rana said they desperately needed a win and his players delivered against Nayabasti. "Despite being a man down, my players showed the hunger to win the game. We are delighted with the victory," said Rana.
Nayabasti's coach Chet Narayan Shrestha said the indirect free-kick awarded for the six second rule was the turning point of the game. "The referee should have warned him instead of giving the free-kick. The equalizer gave the boost they needed," said Shrestha.
In the second match of the day, substitute Binod Rai scored a hat-trick for Boys Union in their victory over Jhamsikhel.
Skipper Tanka Bahadur Singdan scored the opening in the 26th minute. Substitute Rai, who came into the field in the 61st minute, scored three minutes after coming into the pitch. He added two more in the added minutes to complete his hat-trick.
Both coaches admitted their players lacked fitness in today's match. Boys Union's Sagar Ghimire said the extended break due to the pandemic affected their players. "We converted scoring opportunities. Our players' fitness level will improve as we progress in the league," said Ghimire.
Jhamsikhel's coach Purushottam Thapa said his team failed to create chances. "They had chances and they converted them. We lacked the sharpness up front," said Thapa.