Herald down Tarun Bharat to set up final clash with Prudent

Panjim: Herald Publications will take on Prudent Media in the final of the inter-media nine-a-side football tournament at the Athletic Stadium, Bambolim, today, at 4 p.m.

The tournament is being organised by the Sports Journalists Association of Goa (SJAG) in collaboration with Goa Football Development Council (GFDC) and Sports Authority of Goa (SAG).

In the first semis, Herald started the match with an attacking intent and surged ahead in search of an early lead.

With Minguel and Sailesh Zantye pairing upfront, their pace made it difficult for Tarun Bharat in their defence. Herald soon took the lead when Allan D’Cruz, on receiving a pass from Lance Godinho played a long diagonal ball to Minguel who covered some distance before slotting home, 1-0.

Herald, who were without their prominent midfielder Yatin Bakhale. soon had another chance to take the lead from the penalty spot. Shailesh Madkaikar played a pass to Minguel in the box, but the last man was brought down in the box and referee made no hesitation to point towards the spot. Minguel stepped over to take the spot kick, but shot his effort out of the frame.

Herald’s defence comprising of Karsten Miranda, Lance Godinho and Anil Dessai played a compact game making it difficult for Tarun Bharat. Herald led 1-0 at the break.

Tarun Bharat, who found it difficult to score tried for long range shot, which were cleverly dealt by Herald keeper Jose Fernandes.

In the second half, the match continued with Herald dominating the play. Herald’s Shailesh Zantye’s shot was brilliantly saved by the Tarun Bharat keeper before Minguel also tested the keeper with a ground shot.

With time running out, Tarun Bharat players added more men to their attack. Herald’s Allan D’Cruz was booked by the referee for his tackle on a Tarun Bharat player.

Herald could have easily doubled the lead in the final quarter of the game, when Allan squared the ball to S Zantye at the face of the goal, but the latter shot over the bar with just the keeper at his mercy.

At the other end, Tarun Bharat punished Herald for their missed chances and equalised through Anil Kerkar whose long range shot gave no chance to Herald keeper Jose.

But there was time for another goal. Herald made two changes in the game with Edwin and Abhijeet entering the field, and with the fresh legs coming in the game, Herald managed to score with a quick counter attack which was initiated from the back by Anil Dessai. Anil set up Allan in the final third, who covered some ground before unleashing a powerful strike which had no answer from the Tarun Bharat keeper. The goal proved to be the match-winner. Allan was adjudged Outstanding Player of the Match. Before the final, an exhibition match will be played between Goa Union of Journalist (GUJ) and GFDC.

Later, in the second semi-finals, Prudent pipped The Times of India 1-0.

The Chief Guest, Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant and Minister of Waste Management, Science and Technology, Port and Rural Development Michael Lobo are likely to play in the exhibition match for GFDC.

GFDC Member Secretary, Aleixo da Costa; Director of Sports Authority of Goa, VM Prabhu Desai; SJAG President, Mahesh Gaonkar, SJAG Secretary, Sachin Korde and SJAG Organising Secretary, Glenn Costa will also be present. [H]