Mariner Young’s Club sent Mohammedan Sporting Club crashing out of the title race after the former outplayed the latter 4-2 in the Super Six phase of the Green Delta Premier Division Hockey League at Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday.
Ishtiaque Ahmed scored two vital goals, in the process strengthening Mariner’s position at the top of the points table. Mariner and Usha Krira Chakra both have 37 points but the latter have played a game less.
With the loss, Mohammedan now have 26 points from 13 matches, 11 behind the joint leaders, and are virtually out of title contention. Usha will face Abahani Limited in today’s match following which the scenario of the title race will become much clearer.
Ishtiaque put Mariners ahead in the ninth minute of the game from a counter attack. Ishtiaque changed the direction of a powerful hit by Kamrul Islam Rabby that hit the board.
After going behind, Mohammedan created pressure and earned two penalty corners in the 15th and 18th minute but failed to convert any, following some solid defensive display by the Mariners
backline, led admirably by Mamunur Rahman Chayan.
Ishtiaque netted his second to double the lead in the 44th minute before Ashraful Islam converted a penalty corner six minutes later to put Mariner in a comfortable position. Waqas Sharif made it 4-0 at the hour mark to seal victory.
Mohammedan tried to stage a comeback but it was too late. Pakistan forward Tasvar Abbas and midfielder Mohammad Imran scored for the Black and Whites
in the 66th and 69th minutes, both from penalty corners, but Mariner held on for the win.