Maharashtra striker Arif Shaikh to miss Santosh Trophy final round

The top scorer for Maharashtra in the first round of the Hero Santosh Trophy 2022-23 campaign – Arif Shaikh, is not named in the squad for the final round

Sources close to the development has stated the Atlanta FC striker has requested to be opted out of the squad for some serious personal reasons.

In the first round of the competition, Arif Shaikh was one of the star performers for Maharashtra. He scored 6 goals of the total 13 goals scored by the team playing a major role in Maharashtra’s second-place finish.

With his absence, the burden of goal-scoring will now fall on Himanshu Patil, Sufiyan Shaikh, and co. Himanshu has been excellent for his club Atlanta FC in the MFA Elite division scoring 12 goals in 9 games so far and coach steven would love to see him continue his goal-scoring form in the Santosh Trophy.

Meanwhile, WIFA has named Pune Midfielder Shrikant Molangiri as Arif’s replacement. The 33-year-old midfielder has previously played with now-defunct I League outfit DSK Shivajians. In 2015, he was adjudged ‘the best player’ of the Pune Super Division season.

While Arif’s absence will be huge, Coach Steven Dias will be hoping the rest of the squad will step up as Maharashtra gears up for the final round from Feb 10 onwards

For Full squad – Click here

For full set of fixtures of the final round, visit – Fixture List

Also Read: Holders Kerala, Goa to play opening match of Hero Santosh Final Round in Bhubaneswar

Also Read: India lose lead and match against Nepal in SAFF U-20 Women’s C’ship

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