Central Railway to play HDFC in Super Division final

28th April 2018, Mumbai: MDFA Super Division’s semi-final was contested on Saturday evening at the Mumbai Football Arena, Andheri. HDFC played Air India while Central Railway encountered Bank of India (BOI). In what turned out to be electrifying encounters, HDFC edged Air India Youth Team on penalties while Central Railway defeated BOI 2-1 to qualify for the finals.

HDFC (Ramesh Singh 22′) 1-1 Air India Youth (Sanchit Bhatt 11′) – HDFC won 5-3 via penalties

A breathtaking semi-final between HDFC and Air India Youth Team ended just like how a highly hyped match would. Air India started brilliantly and opened the scoring through Sanchit Bhatt in the 22nd minute.

Their attacking approach turned out to be a very effective one to breach HDFC’s defence. But HDFC bounced back. Ten minutes later, their top-scorer Ramesh Singh levelled the score with a superb finish. His striker’s instinct has earned him a place in the MDFA Awards Night’ nomination for Best Striker in Super Division.

Throughout the campaign, HDFC has maintained their superb form, including a 5-0 win over arch-rivals State Bank of India (SBI) on 15 April and played at Cooperage, Colaba where all the five goals were scored in the first-half. On the other end, Air India was in their top form too which took the match into the penalties. HDFC held their nerves and edged their counterpart 5-3 in the shootout.

Central Railway (Akshay Kamble 3′ and Chetan Waghela 56′) 2-1 Bank of India (Aishwary Belekar 29′)

The other semi-final was a tight contest between the Railways and the Bankers. The experience and tenacity helped Central Railway to overcome a difficult hurdle and set up a clash against HDFC in the final.

The Railways made a whopping start. Akshay Kamble opened the scoring in the 3rd minute with a terrific finish past Sanjeev Verma. BOI responded in their very own style. They have always tend to change the complexion of the game with their spearheaded attack.

BOI’s in-form striker Aishwary Belekar equalized with a fine strike just before the half-an-hour mark. But early into the second-half, Central Railway restored the parity through Chetan Waghela’s fantastic strike which turned out to be the decisive goal.