Margao: A three-goal burst by Rui Wanderley Weis helped Vasco thrash ITI 5-0 and keep their title hopes alive in the seventh edition of the Oil PSU National Football League match played at Nehru Stadium here Sunday.
In another match, in Ludhiana, Dempo Sports Club of Goa shocked JCT, Phagwara, 3-1.
Wanderley scored in the 22nd, 41st and 90th minutes. Agnelo Gomes scored in the 53rd and Jules Alberto Dias in the 60th.
Vasco, who made a sluggish start, slowly settled down with their midfield taking control of the proceedings and got the breakthrough when Wanderlei took advantage of his height to nod home a Satish Minz cross from the left.
Wanderley increased the lead when he chipped from the top of the box past the rushing keeper Gumpe Rime to find the net off a Jules Dias Pass.
No home advantage
JCT, the ‘home’ team and the favourites this day, failed to hold fort in the second half, conceding two goals, following a 1-1 first half.
Rattan Singh opened the account for Dempo in the 25th minute with an excellent strike, but JCT equalised 15 minutes later through Hardip Gill whose gentle push beat the custodian Praness Fernandes.
Though both sides scored a goal each in the first half, Dempo players dominated the proceedings with some fine play as their rivals struggled to take possession of the ball. JCT’s dependable goalkeeper Mansur Mohd was also not up to the mark.
The first 20 minutes of the second half saw both the sides trying hard to snatch the lead. But it was Dempo who pumped in two goals in quick succession — E. B. Chena in the 65th minute and Bijen Singh in the 71st minute — to put the issue beyond JCT. Sunday’s win took Dempo’s points tally to 29 while JCT remained on 34 points.