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Sunrise light up opener

Guwahati, Aug. 5: Sunrise Athletic Club today tamed former champions Assam Police Blues 4-1 in its campaign opener of the Guwahati Sports Association’s RG Baruah Trophy Super League football tournament at Nehru Stadium.

Unlike yesterday’s inaugural match between the Sports Authority of India SC and Food Corporation of India SC, where FCI won a thumping 4-1 victory, the Sunrise men had to toil hard to overcome the policemen in today’s encounter.

African recruit striker Edoho Gilbert stole the show for Sunrise with a hattrick.

He drew first blood in the seventh minute, pushing in a Poulung Gongmei header off a flagkick by Abhijit Nandi, which was cleared by Assam Police Blues custodian Kailash Das.

Leading by a goal, the Sunrise men continued to raid the opponent’s castle at regular intervals but without a breakthrough.

The policemen took the opportunity to go on a counter-offensive and their efforts yielded results when Rabijit Jigdung collected a pass from Abraham L. Hmar from the midfield by and went past the Sunrise defenders to score a goal with a slow left footer in the 26th minute.

However, the parity was shortlived as L. Arunjit Singh fashioned the lead once again for Sunrise, converting a free kick from the left flank straight into the second post.

Trailing by two goals into the second half, the policemen changed their custodian and brought in Lakhi Nath Hazarika. However, Hazarika proved ineffective, as Gilbert pumped in two more goals in the second half.

The policemen started the second session aggressively, launching some strong offensives into the Sunrise territory. Once back into the offensive, Gilbert scored in the 59th minute with a spectacular left-footer from the left flank into the second post that left goalie Hazarika gaping. He struck again in the 79th minute by pushing in a minus by substitute Kh. Ramen Singh from the left flank.

The policemen’s lack of co-ordination and poor finishing up front marred their chances of scoring any more goals.

The Sunrise men made some good moves but squandered a few opportunities because of poor finishing. However, the solo efforts by Gilbert and Abhijit Nandi on a few occasions were enough to entertain the supporters.

Jewel Star Club will play Maharana Athletic Club tomorrow.

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