Charismatic Karim Shaikh’s hat-trick powers Central Railways against inefficient Great Mother S.C

Central Railways beat Great Mother Sports Club 3-1 thanks to an excellent hat-trick from Karim Shaikh in an Elite Division game of the Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) at Cooperage on Monday, 18th May, 2015.

After a fairly tight opening quarter of an hour, Central Railways began to assert themselves on the game and were duly rewarded in the 18th minute when Karim Shaikh fired the Central Railways opener.

Five minutes later, Central Railways very nearly doubled their tally when Sajandeep Singh’s shot came off the crossbar. A minute later at the other G.M.S.C missed a great chance to equalize as their striker failed to tap in from six yards just before the referee stopped play for a water break.

G.M.S.C grew into the game as the half progressed but failed to take several opportunities that came their way. Tushar Poojari had a great chance to get G.M.S.C on level terms but he flashed his over from close range. He had a very tight angle to shoot which made it difficult for Tushar Poojari to find the target.

But he had no such problems in doing so on the stroke of half time when his shot went through the Central Railways goalkeeper Shibu Shanmugan and into the net as G.M.S.C drew level moments before the referee blew for half time.

G.M.S.C deserved their equalizer even though it had a touch of fortune in it as the Central Railways Custodian’s slip at the crucial juncture induced the error which led to the goal

Central Railways made a great start to the second half as they regained the lead within just two minutes of the restart as some as Karim Shaikh did brilliantly to create space to turn and accurately fire his shot into the bottom corner.

It was a brilliant exhibition of forward play from Karim Shaikh who displayed great skills and composure to grab his and his side’s second of the game.

Referee turned down a penalty shout at the other end immediately after the restart of play after the goal. The appeals were more out of desperation from G.M.S.C who found themselves having to chase the game once again.

Central Raiways could have had a third goal in the 50th minute when Sajandeep Singh raced clear in a swift counter attack from the Railwaymen to brilliantly lay off a fellow Central Railway attacker at the far post but he fired his shot wide of the target.

G.M.S.C nearly pulled themselves level five minutes later with an counter attack of their own which saw Michael Idewele through on goal only to see his dinged effort touched away by theCentral Railway goalkeeper who did extremely well get a hand to the G.M.S.C forward’s efforts.

In the 64th minute, Kartik Putharan matched his opposite number when he pulled off a brilliant save as he tipped over a shot from Sajandeep Singh who brilliantly controlled a cross from the right wing to fire at the goal.

G.M.S.C were mightily unlucky not to have equalized in the 75th minute when Michael Idewele’s effort bounced onto the upright after he managed to beat the onrushing Shibu Shanmugan.

Three minutes later, Michael Idewele had yet another chance to score when Max Hanglem brilliantly set him up just outside the six yards box with the goal at his mercy, but his rather casual effort was parried away by the Central Railways goalkeeper Shibu Shanmugan.

It was another one of those nearly moments for G.M.S.C in the game which went begging adding to their frustrations at time was running out for them to grab anything from the match.

But it was to be Karim Shaikh’s dayas he completed a memorable hat-trick with a fantastic free kick in the 88th minute to seal the three points for Central Railways.

It was an emphatic display from the Central Railway striker and his hat-trick was one of the finest ones this season. He was clearly the difference between the two sides as G.M.S.C failed to take their chances when Karim Shaikh gave a lesson in finishing at the other end.

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