By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – Tribhuvan Army Football Club were held to a 1-1 draw by departmental rivals APF as Army failed to protect their lead in the Qatar Airways Martyrs Memorial A Division League match at Dasharath Stadium on Friday.
Army’s goalkeeper Bikesh Kuthu denied APF from taking the lead in the second minute when he easily stopped a free kick from Navin Lama. On the other half, George Prince Karki’s shot from outside the penalty box was foiled by APF goalkeeper Yuya Kuriyama in the fifth minute. Kuriyama also punched away a shot from outside the box by Army captain Bharat Khawas in the ninth minute. Army were close to taking the lead in the 20th minute when Karki’s header in a corner kick from Jagjeet Shrestha hit the bar and skied off.
APF threatened Army’s defense in the 38th minute when Ashish Lama took the ball towards the post in a one-versus-one situation. However, Yuddha Shahi came to the rescue to foil Lama’s attempt. Army’s goalkeeper punched another shot by Navin Lama in the 58th minute in an entertaining match.
Army finally made the breakthrough in the 63rd minute when Karki scored the goal to give his team a 1-0 lead. He fired a shot in a pass from Dinesh Henjan which went through five defenders and entered the net after deflecting off Rajan Gurung.
However, Army’s happiness was short lived as Bikki Tamang scored an equalizer three minutes later. Tamang scored the goal after Army goalkeeper Kuthu dropped a ball while trying to block a shot from Navin Lama.
Army could have added another goal in the 83rd minute but Karki scrambled to score a goal in vain twice after Kuriyama was unable to control a shot fired by Bivek Basnet.
Both the teams remain unchanged in the points table after the draw. Army have 11 points from seven matches and remain stable in the fourth position. APF have 6 points from 7 matches and are 11th in the table.
This is the fifth draw of Army. Prior to this match, Army had shared the spoils with Police, Machhindra, Satdobato and Three Star. Army had defeated Chyasal and Brigade Boys.
On the other hand, it was the third draw of APF, who had played draws against Three Star and NRT. They had beaten Friends Club but were defeated by BBC, Chyasal and Satdobato.