ONGC see off a late Great Mother SC rally to claim a narrow win

Oil & Natural Gas Corporation survived a late surge from Great Mother Sports Club to claim a 1-0 win in the Elite Division game of the Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) at Cooperage on 25th March 2015. An early goal from Lavino Fernandes proved decisive as ONGC registered a second successive win in the space of three days.

ONGC were fresh off a 3-0 win over CBI coming into the game against GMSC who had put in a strong performance to nick a point of Indian Navy in their last outing.

But it was ONGC who drew first blood just six minutes from the start through Lavino Fernandes whose neat finish was completely out of Kartik Putran’s reach.

ONGC had wind in their sails as they threatened to run riot. But GMSC got their act together pretty quickly to passify ONGC’s growing threat.

GMSC had a few good moments just before the water break. But it was ONGC who controlled the thick of the things.

Lavino Fernandes was unfortunate not to double his and his team’s tally in the 37th minute when he rattled the crossbar with an effort from just inside the penalty area.

Three minutes later, Kailash Patil was cleverly slipped through on goal by a through ball from Justin Singh Bisht but the ONGC skipper failed to hit the target as his effort went wide of the right hand side post.

GMSC had a great chance to go into the break on level terms when Sushil Kawde made a darting run at the ONGC defence but a heavy touch inside the penalty area allowed ONGC to clear the danger.

ONGC had their nose in front at half time and had been the dominant of the two sides. But GMSC had plenty of moments in the first half to keep them interested.

ONGC were on the front foot from the start of the second period as Kailash Patil forced a brilliant low save to Kartik Putran’s right after a swift turn in the 49th minute.

GMSC replaced Clifford Garrett with Clyde Noronha at the hour mark as ONGC responded with a double change.

But the fresh legs failed to spark either side as the game lost it’s high tempo before the water break post the 70th minute.

ONgC’s failure to kill the game gave GMSC plenty of encouragement as they started to play with a lot of crspness in their play as ONGC started dropping back into their half.

GMSC replaced Apparao Chiman with Gregory Pinto with in the 78th minute with a view to aid their attacks.

GMSC won a free kick just at the edge of the box in the 80th minute but Tushar Poojari’s effort was over hit and went over.

There was a controversial moment four minutes later when a header from a GMSC player looked to have sneaked past the goal line as Karan Atwal made a crucial clearance on the line.

There were appeals from the GMSC bench but the referee stuck to him linesman’s call and waved away the appeals.

ONGC got through the rough patch and very nearly made it 2-0 when substitute Parminder Singh was denied by Kartik Putran’s despite being in an one on one position with the striker in the final minute of stoppage time.

The referee blew for full time as ONGC wobbled across the finishing line.

Despite the lack of goals, it was an entertaining encounter as GMSC ran the mighty ONGC very close.

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