Md. Sp. beat Tolly, finish third
Greer SC top third division
Dipendu to miss first match
France shocked by Poland

Calcutta, Sept. 4: 

Smaller teams, smaller dreams. Today, Mohammedan Sporting realised theirs by beating Tollygunge Agragami to the third spot in the Super Division League with a 1-0 win at Salt Lake Stadium. Nazimul Haq�s stunning second-minute strike not only injected fresh confidence into a side left shaken by the life sentence to former secretary Mir Mohammed Omar, but also ensured that Mohammedan Sporting regained the third spot after three years.

The odds were against Mohammedan Sporting who took the field without defenders Aslam Pervez, Tej Bahadur and forward Kasif Jamal which forced veteran stopper Rehmatullah Khan to play his first full match of the season.

But Najimul�s early strike and some dour defending highlighted by goalkeeper Gopal Das� flawless showing resulted in their biggest achievement of the season. Their cause was helped significantly by the complete lack of bite in the Tollygunge Agragami attack.

Not too many, including Tollygunge goalkeeper Amit Sinha Roy, had settled down when Abdul Khaleque�s seemingly harmless pass found Nazimul just outside the box. The frail striker hesitated for a while before cracking a thunderous 20-yard volley which beat the goalkeeper all ends up.

Tollygunge forced quite a few chances after that but in vain. Sandip Das missed the chance of the day in the 40th minute after being cleverly set up by Abdulatif Seriki but drove straight into the goalkeeper.

Things remained same in the second half and Seriki let go a host of chances but Mohammedan Sporting also came across a couple of them, from counterattacks, Najimul being the culprit both times.

The Tollygunge coach tried out all his resources and even kept three men up front but most of their forays got muddled up in the rival penalty area. The crosses, which kept flying in from both flanks, were ill-directed and easily dealt by the defenders.


MOHAMMEDAN SPORTING: Gopal Das; Soumen Sarkar, Insaan Ali (Narayan Saha, 82), Rehmatullah Khan, Palash Ghosh; Amzad Ansari (Mohammed Rafiq, 65), Srikrishna Ghosh, Ohidul Islam (Santu Kolay, 58), Alauddin Ansari, Abdul Khaleque, Nazimul Haq.

TOLLYGUNGE AGRAGAMI: Amit Sinha Roy; Napolean Singh, Satish Bharti, Madhusudan Majumdar, Partha Sarathi Dey; Abayomi Felix, Sandip Das (Ali Reja, 71), Sumit Sur (Mohammed Kaiser, 40), Bhabani Mohanty (Ranjan Chowdhury, 75); Seriki Abdulateef, Samson Singh.

Referee: Kalidas Mukherjee.    

Calcutta, Sept. 4: 
Greer SC emerged third division champions of the Calcutta Football League (CFL) today.

They edged out Chandney SC by a solitary goal in the championship play-off final, S. Mohapatra netting the decisive goal. Both teams had already been assured of a slot in next season�s second division championship.

Wari �keeper suspended

The league sub-committee today decided to suspend Wari AC goalkeeper Raju Chatterjee for the rest of the season. His offence was hitting referee Kashinath Sen during a group A tie against Kidderpore after the latter had equalised. Raju should consider himself lucky as his team has only two more league games to play.

Another group A side, Bhratri Sangha, were docked five points for not fielding a team against City AC.

In another decision, the league sub-committee referred Aikya Sammilani�s �match-fixing� letter to the governing body. Aikya had alleged that Victoria had fixed their 3-1 win over Barisha, thus pushing Aikya to relegation zone in first division group B.

Bagan letter to IFA

Mohun Bagan officials have written a letter to IFA stating an R.C. Prakash goal in Saturday�s Super Division championship leg match against East Bengal was wrongly over-ruled by referee Udayan Haldar and that a play-off match should be organised to determine the champions. A Mohun Bagan win in that game would have forced a championship play-off. In reality, the match was drawn giving East Bengal a hattrick of titles.

Club officials also condoned IFA�s role in posting of referees in important games.

Protest against Gupta

A group of 500 fans, calling themselves the �Save Football Committee,� protested in front of the IFA office and burnt an effigy of IFA joint secretary Ranjit Gupta demanding his resignation within 15 days. Gupta is a senior official of first division group B team Victoria SC, against whom charges of match-fixing have been levelled.

Omollo return

Mohun Bagan�s Mr Dependable Sammy Omollo, who left for Kenya to do national duty last week, will be back in the city Wednesday. The central defender missed Mohun Bagan�s last two Super Division championship leg ties � against Mohammedan Sporting and East Bengal.

Mohun Bagan took his absence in stride in the Mohammedan Sporting game, winning 5-0, but missed him in the must-win clash against the arch-rivals.

Mohun Bagan open their IFA Shield campaign that day, against SBT.    

Calcutta, Sept. 4: 
East Bengal will miss Dipendu Biswas in their first match in the 106th IFA Shield against BNR at Salt Lake Stadium tomorrow. In a group B match at Rabindra Sarobar Stadium, George Telegraph will meet SBT.

Dipendu hurt his left ankle in the Super Division match against Mohun Bagan Saturday and is also doubtful for East Bengal�s next match versus JCT Friday.

SBT, meanwhile, are aiming for at least a semi-final spot. They are playing their second meet of the season after the Millennium Cup in June. Coach Mohammed Najib said George are unknown opponents but didn�t look too bothered about that.

In another development, the Mohun Bagan executive committee decided to take part in the Shield. Despite the coach�s suggestion that Mohun Bagan pull out of the meet, the executive committee decided to fulfil their commitments.

Md. Sp. may skip meet

Mohammedan Sporting coach Syed Firoze also urged club officials to pull out of the Shield. �Too many matches without rest is doing our players no good,� was his argument. Following a similar suggestion from captain Aslam Parvez, club officials have called a meetinmg tomorrow and the decison will be announced after that.

Firoz won�t be around during the Shield as he will return to Bangalore where his 17-year-old sister passed away this morning. He deferred his departure to be with the team for the Super Division match today.

�Our team desperately needs reinforcements in defence. Also, a host of players are either injured or unwell. There is no point in taking part in the Shield if new players are not recruited,� Firoz said.

�A coach can do little with our current set of players.�    

French bridge lovers observed a day of mourning on Sunday as their teams in Open and Women�s events suffered surprise losses as the quarter finalists were identified in the world teams bridge Olympiad being played in Maastricht.

Defending champions France cut a sorry figure against Poland, losing by 116 imps to 139 after trailing throughout. Later, the French ladies also bowed out, losing to Chinese Taipei 113 imps to 98 on the eighth day of the tournament.

In the 64-board round of 16, there were some close finishes, the closest being Austria-Sweden in the Open �the former were up 22 imps at the quarter, down eight at the half, up 12 with a set to go and held on to win by four (153 to 149).

Nearly as close were the Brazil-Indonesia and England-Belgium contests in the Open, both decided by a margin of five imps. Brazil took a 15-imp lead at the quarter and though Indonesia won the remaining three sets, Brazil survived 139 to 134.

The England-Belgium match saw the former losing the first session by 39 imps. They were still down 38 with a set to go, but snatched victory with a 43-imp set to win 133 to 128. In other matches, the US trounced Argentina 184 to 108 and Italy beat Australia 184 to 104.

In the Women�s event, hosts The Netherlands trailed Israel throughout but then managed to avoid a double national disaster with a 25-imp last set to win 136 to 130. Earlier, Iceland beat The Netherlands 107-94 in the Open.

Scotland fought the US tooth-and-nail till the end � the first and last sets were tied and in-between the Americans won two sets by five and two imps to survive by 132 to 125.

Results of round of 16 in brief (Imps in 64-board matches)

OPEN: Italy beat Australia 184-104; Brazil beat Indonesia 139-134; Norway beat Russia 120-106; England beat Belgium 133-128; Iceland beat Netherlands 107-94; Poland beat France 139-116; Austria beat Sweden 153-149; USA beat Argentina 184-108.

WOMEN�s : Germany beat Japan 197-80; China beat England 161-140; USA beat Scotland 132-125; Canada beat Sweden 144-51; Norway beat Poland 185-137; South Africa beat Austria 154-109; The Netherlands beat Israel 136-130; Chinese Taipei beat France 113-98.    


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