Dhruwesh Nijap heads it home for ONGC

In a highly tense encounter in which both teams were reduced to 10 men for the final half hour, a first half header from Dhruwesh Nijap turned out to be the difference as ONGC edged Bank of Baroda

In a highly tense encounter in which both teams were reduced to 10 men for the final half hour, a first half header from Dhruwesh Nijap turned out to be the difference as ONGC edged Bank of Baroda

ONGC started out brightly with the first big opportunity coming to Sunil Lohar who skipped past two defenders before pulling the trigger only to be denied by Bankers Goalie Rohit Patil. The rebound fell for Arif Shaikh who could not keep his shot on target.

The aggressive start was quite evident with three players getting booked in the process early on. Nikesh Gurung got into the referee books in the 8th minute of the game while Prathamesh Kasare got yellow card after a tackle from behind around the half hour mark.

The opening goal came from a set-peice situation for ONGC, Prathamesh Kasare swung in a brilliant cross from corner which was headed into the net by Dhruwesh Nijap to put his side into the lead.

In the second half, a commotion ensued after Bankers Denzil Mascarenhas and ONGC Dhiraj Meher got into confrontation after elbowing each other. The issue escalated and eventually the referee gave the marching orders to both the players.

With half an hour to play, the game opened up a bit. A foul inside the Bankers box meant the referee awarded a spot-kick to ONGC, however Sunil Lohar failed to convert his strike as his shot to the left was saved by an excellent Patil between the sticks. At the other end, Sunil Lohar made up for his penalty miss with a sliding clearance in front of goal to preserve the lead for ONGC.

Later in the game, Bankers Custodian Rohit Patil was once again called into action after Aman Solanki missed a clearance to allow ONGC striker Himanshu Patil to latch on the ball and run towards the goal however the striker failed to beat the Keeper Rohit Patil, who continued his excellent display between the sticks.

Bank of Baroda could not find any late equalizer as the game ended 1-0 in favour of ONGC with the latter extending their unbeaten run.

ONGC 1 – 0 Bank Of Baroda

Also Read: Goa to host Hero ISL 2019-20 final

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