Sports Castle Pokhara reached the final of 'A' Division National Futsal League defeating Rising Club Dharan 8-6 in the first qualifier on Wednesday.
Rising Club will have another shot for a place in the final when they take on Sankhamul Futsal, which overcame Sabin Memorial FC 3-2 in the eliminator.
In the qualifier played at the multipurpose hall in Pokhara, hat-tricks from Kishor Gurung and Sumit Shrestha and goals from Suraj Gurung and Bijay Gurung helped Sports Castle to the final. Sudip Gurung, Hemanta Thapar and Milan Rai all scored twice in Rising Club's defeat.
In the eliminator match, Krijal Khadka scored a brace and Jenish Prajapati scored another as Sankhamul edged past Sabin Memorial. Saroj Gurung and Manoj Gurung scored for Sabin Memorial.
Sankhamul will now play against Rising Club in another qualifier on Thursday for a place in the final. The final will be played on Friday.
The U-13 youth football academy of Tribhuban Army Football Club (TAFC) has been officially inaugurated on Tuesday.
Chief of Army Staff Prabhuram Sharma, President of the All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) Karma Tsering Sherpa and General Secretary of the Nepal Olympic Committee Nilendra Raj Shrestha inaugurated the event at a function held at the Army Headquarters.
TAFC had earlier reached an agreement with the ANFA to run a youth football academy.
Sabin Memorial FC became the final team to secure their place in the playoffs as group stage of 'A' Division National Futsal League concluded on Tuesday.
Sabin Memorial defeated Sankhamul Futsal 3-1 with goals from Sunil BK, Manish Chhetri and Samir Pradhan. Susaan Shrestha was the goalscorer for Sankhamul.
Sabin Memorial's berth was also confirmed after Futsal 5 Dharan, also in contention, lost to Prabhatpheri Youth Club. Doubles from Dhiraj Joshi and Dona Thapa and goals from Santa Lal Gurung and Bibek Saru Magar condemned Futsal 5 to a 6-2 loss.
Sandip Karki and Nayal Shrestha scored for Futsal 5.
Dhuku Futsal Hub defeated relegated Jharna Sports Club 5-3 in another dead rubber match.
Suman Lama, Dawa Dukpa Sherpa, Amit Lama, Prasiddha Magar and Urken Sherpa scored for Dhuku, who were already out of playoffs race. Ganga Gurung, Prabesh Khanal Chhetri and Amit Gurung scored for Jharna Sports, who finished the league without a point.
Sports Castle Pokhara will play against The Rising Club Dharan in the first playoffs on Wednesday with the winner going to the final. The second playoffs will be between Sankhamul Futsal and Sabin Memorial FC with the winner playing against the loser of the first playoff for a place in the final.
Nepal edged out Sri Lanka 3-2 in a thrilling SAFF Championship match and are in a prime position to reach the finals of the Championship for the first time in the history on Monday.
Nepal raced to a 2-0 lead when Sri Lanka pulled one back but Nepal maintained the composure to score the third before Sri Lanka scored a late second in the entertaining and intensive encounter at the National Stadium in Male.
Nepal were pegged back early by a brisk Sri Lankan start but took the lead through Suman Lama in the 30th minute. After some clever work by Nawayug Shrestha, Lama received the ball and latched a powerful shot which Sri Lankan keeper Sujan Perera tried to keep out but Lama raced first to poke the ball into the net though replays showing the ball already going into the net in the first time round.
Following a 1-0 lead in the first half, Nepal had a brilliant chance to double their lead through Anjan Bista denied by Sri Lankan keeper in the start of second half. But Anjan soon made amends for that when Ayush Ghalan got past two defenders with some silky footwork, laid the ball to Tej Tamang whose shot came off the keeper to Anjan Bista who directed it into an empty net.
Sri Lanka, who now had a tough task to not only get back into the game but in the championship, saw their best chance cleared off the line by Suman Aryal in near the hour mark. Sri Lanka were finally rewarded through that clearance when Marvin Hamilton's powerful shot sailed into the net.
Following the goal, Sri Lanka suddenly found the boost they needed but could do no more harm. Nepal, instead, had a wonderful chance to score a third through substitute Santosh Tamang whose shot was saved by Perera. Perera was quick enough to save the rebound shot from Ghalan.
Ghalan scored Nepal's third four minutes from time when he controlled Tej Tamang's cross and showed maturity beyond his age to calmly slot it past rushing Perera. Sri Lanka scored their second through a penalty in the first minute of added time awarded after Gautam Shrestha was adjudged to have handled the ball inside the box.
Dillion De Silva sent Kiran Kumar Limbu into the opposite direction but given the defensive composure exhibited by Nepal, the comeback was always going to be late for Sri Lanka.
Nepal now have six points from two matches and are on the top of the table with the only team with cent percent results. Nepal will now play against India on October 10 and against Bangladesh on October 13.
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