10 men Kenkre hold table toppers RoundGlass Punjab in a 6-goal thriller

RoundGlass Punjab FC (RGPFC) were held by ten men Kenkre FC in a six-goal thriller in a Round 15 fixture of the Hero I – League 2022-23 season played here at the Cooperage Stadium.

All goals were scored in the first half. Chencho Gyeltshen, Noacha Singh and Luka Majcen scored for RGPFC while Ranjeet Pandre scored twice for Kenkre FC. Aman Gaikwad scored the third goal for the hosts.

RGPFC coach Staikos Vergetis named an unchanged side for the match. Kenkre FC coach Akhil Kothari fielded his strong side against the table toppers. Kenkre FC stunned the RGPFC defence when they started the match with an all-out attack. The RGPFC defence looked out of position and Kenkre punished them by scoring twice inside five minutes. The first goal came in the 3rd minute through a well-worked move.

Nepali midfielder Anjan Bista’s pass was finished well by Ranjeet Pandre to give Kenkre the lead. RGFC were stunned again minutes later when Anjan Bista found Aman Gaikwad in the box who finished past RGPFC keeper Kiran Kumar Limbu. RGPFC settled from the early shock and took control of the game. Brandon Vanlalremdika found Chencho Gyeltshen whose left-foot shot found the net in the 26th minute. RGPFC equalised in the very next attack through wingback Noacha Singh. RGPFC took the attack to the Kenkre defence and took the lead in the 39th minute through Luka Majcen.

Eight minutes into the second half, Kenkre FC were reduced to 10 men when left-back Suraj Negi was sent off after receiving his second yellow card.

The rest of the match was more about ill-tempered moments that earned players, and even officials on the bench, yellow cards. Both defences looked tighter after the breather. Punjab still had more possession and created more opportunities, but luck did not favour them. Brandon’s shot off Mera’s cross from the right hit the upright. Even Majcen came close to scoring his tenth goal in the Hero I-League but his header went over the bar in the 84th minute.

In the final minute of stoppage time, Valpuia’s shot from a hand-shaking distance was blocked by a defender. Punjab players and staff thought there was a handball off the resultant corner and they deserved a penalty. Referee Dipu Roy thought otherwise and only awarded yet another yellow card to one of Vergetis’s assistants.

RGPFC have 30 points from fourteen matches while Kenkre FC has 14 points from fifteen matches. RGPFC will face Sudeva Delhi FC on February 5th at Chhatrasal Stadium, New Delhi.

Also Read: Kerala Blasters signs Bengaluru FC midfielder Danish Farooq

Also Read: Emotional to be back in the national camp after so long, says Bala Devi

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