| Taurus Manneh, on Saturday |
Calcutta: Mohun Bagan had to pay for the sitters they missed as they couldn’t log full points against George Telegraph, who held them 1-1 in Saturday’s CFL Premier Division Super XII tie, at the Barasat Stadium.
As coach Karim Bencharifa rightly pointed out in the end, Bagan could have sealed the match in the first session itself. But poor execution saw them let go at least half-a-dozen chances.
However, Bagan did regain the momentum after Katsumi Yusa’s 73rd-minute equaliser. But their flow was hit by partial darkness at the stadium that held up play for 19 minutes.
George Telegraph went into the game with an expectedly defensive approach and stunned their high-profile opponents to go one-up at the halfway stage.
As Goutam Debnath back-headed an Adekunle Waheed corner, striker Taurus Manneh was swift enough to do the needful with a volley in the 38th minute.
The script could have been an entirely different one had Sankar Oraon not squandered a chance, something even a toddler couldn’t have missed, just a couple of minutes before.
Oraon was hardly a yard away from an open net when Anthony Pereira came up with a superb centre from the right flank. Instead of just tapping the ball home, Oraon sent the ball way over the horizontal.
Prior to this comical stuff, Oraon had another opportunity to give Bagan the lead when Denson Devadas set him up with a wonderful through ball. But he shot wide off the near post.
However, soon after the second session got underway, Karim made two substitutions, fielding Eric Muranda for Oraon and Rowilson Rodrigues for stopperback Anyichie Echezona.
Eric, too, joined in the exhibition of missed chances, but the move to bring him on eventually paid off as he set one up for Katsumi, who equalised. When Bagan seemed to have regained the momentum, lights of two towers went off, as part of the stadium plunged into darkness.
Bagan tried their best for the winner after play resumed. But the rival defence held firm keeping Bagan strikers at bay.