O.N.G.C get back to winning ways after crunching a 2-1 win over R.C.F.

Midweek’s Elite Division action saw Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers play hosts to O.N.G.C. as both sides went head-to-head at Cooperage stadium on 3rd February 2016. O.N.G.C came-back from a goal down to win 2-1 against a struggling R.C.F side; Troy Nunes opened the scoring in the 20th minute for R.C.F, but a 28th minute goal from Enock Annan and 47th strike from Praveen Sharma turned the tie on its head to give O.N.G.C maximum points.

Both R.C.F and O.N.G.C came into Wednesday afternoon’s fixture on the back of defeats. While an under-performing Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers (R.C.F) were defeated 3-1 by Mumbai Customs, O.N.G.C were dismantled 6-0 by Air India, in a result, which sent shock-waves around the city. Also, neither of the two competitors had seen wins in their last two games; O.N.G.C’s record of one loss and one draw gave them an upper-hand (on form) over strugglers R.C.F, who were winless in three games.

R.C.F lined-up in a flat 4-4-2 system, whereas O.N.G.C featured in a 4-2-3-1 formation; both sides started-off cautiously, trying not to commit too many men forward in the initial stages of the match, which resulted in just one goal-scoring opportunity being created from both ends, first by R.C.F’s Sooraj Hakim, whose cross from right-wing to the near-post was met by Kevin Patrick, who failed to convert from a tight angle in the 5th minute; 4 minutes later, O.N.G.C came close to an opener, when a miss control from R.C.F left-back Sandeep Upadhyay was collect by O.N.G.C forward Enock Annan, who found Kailash Patil inside the box, but the latter’s looping header went off target. As the game progressed, both sides became more-and-more open in their play, and as result created a host of chances; on a similar occasion in the 20th minute, both R.C.F strikers combined well to give their side a much needed breakthrough, Kevin Patrick’s flicked header sent Troy Nunes clear on goal as he slotted the ball past O.N.G.C goalkeeper’s left.

The goal didn’t affect the course of the game, and after failing to convert from a number of chances in the opening 25 minutes, O.N.G.C found a way to R.C.F goal when a cross from Parminder Singh to the near post area was tapped in by Enock Annan in the 28th minute to make it 1-1. A poor defensive structure of O.N.G.C in the first-half gave R.C.F a number of chances to run into channels, and thus invite a number of fouls in dangerous areas, which gave them a number of chances to score from which they failed to convert. The final chance of the half was presented to R.C.F’s Troy Nunes, who having rounded the goalkeeper failed to put the ball in the net from a narrow angle.

O.N.G.C began the first-half on a frantic pace and took R.C.F by a storm as they found themselves a goal up (2-1) inside 5 minutes of the second-45 minutes courtesy of a goal from Praveen Sharma, who tapped-in unmarked from a corner taken by Jagdeep Singh in the 47th minute. O.N.G.C were presented with a bonus to extend their lead to two in the 55th minute, when Lalchhuanawma was fouled inside the box and O.N.G.C were awarded a penalty, but Enock Annan failed to convert as he blasted the ball over then prone figure of the goal. As the match reached the 75 minute mark, it was clear that how it has fell short to maintain the early intensity of the first-half with R.C.F recording a number of failed attempts to get back into the game.

By the time, the referee Rahul Gupta blew the full-time whistle, O.N.G.C had got past the hurdle of R.C.F, who lost for the 4th time in a row. Whereas, the story for O.N.G.C is happy one as they get back to winning ways.

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