Kalyani, Feb 14 (PTI) Former champions Aizawl FC failed to score from a penalty kick as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Sudeva Delhi FC in an I-League match at the Kalyani Municipal Stadium here on Sunday.
Aizawl had only themselves to blame in a match where they dominated possession and had scoring chances, including the penalty kick in the second half.
They had numerous scoring chances, but poor finishing let them down as Alfred Jaryan’s second-half strike cancelled out Kean Lewis’ goal in the first half, leading both teams to share points.
Aizawl FC did not waste time in attacking and went hunting for an early goal.
As early as the sixth minute, Aizawl FC’s Brandon Vanlalremdika cut inside the box and unleashed a curling shot but it was saved by the opposition goalkeeper Rakshit Dagar.
Sudeva Delhi FC relied mostly on counter-attacks. In the 19th minute, much against the run of play, Sudeva opened scoring. A long throw from the right flank fell to Kean Lewis, who volleyed it the first time to hand Sudeva the lead.
Stunned by the goal, Aizawl FC committed more bodies in attack to find the equaliser. However, the plan almost backfired in the 29th minute when Sudeva were once again given an opportunity to find the net.
This time, Naocha Singh missed from hand-shaking distance after he was put straight on to goal by a Naorem Mahesh Singh pass.
Aizawl FC almost scored the equaliser in the 51st minute, but poor finishing once again cost them dear. Ramhlunchhunga robbed the Sudeva defence of possession and sent in a low cross for Lalremsanga inside the box. There was ample space and no pressure, but Sanga fluffed his shot and failed to convert from close range.
Sudeva then sat back and let their opponents have the ball. The Delhi side committed bodies in defence and soaked pressure.
It took a moment of magic to breach the Sudeva defence and in the 75th minute and none other than Aizawl skipper Alfred Jaryan proved his worth. After a cross by Brandon was cleared by Sudeva defence, Alfred latched onto a loose ball and sent a powerful shot from outside of the box that gave the goalkeeper no chance.
Aizawl FC were awarded a penalty in the 78th minute after a handball inside the box, but Malsawmtluanga missed his chance with Rakshit Dagar producing a top save. PTI PDS APA APA