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Bombay Gold Cup: Customs derail Central Railways (4/16/2009)
--Press Release
Customs derail Central Railways

Mumbai Customs endured a second half challenge before overcoming a gritty Central Railway 2-1, in the 47th Bombay Gold Cup Hockey Tournament at the MHA-Mahindra Stadium on Thursday.

Before that, Indian Navy and Maharaja Ranjit Singh Academy, Amritsar rallied to exciting opening round wins

In the opening match of the tournament, Navy recovered from a 0-2 deficit to rally to a thrilling 4-3 win over Mumbai Port Trust to give the competition an explosive start.

While Central Railway struggled to form an effective combination, the more aggressive Customs required an entire quarter to warm up before they exerted pressure and surged into the rival citadel.

undefined Customs struck the first goal in the 26th minute when veteran Romeo Albuquerque’s feeble attempt rolled past a defence caught napping, off their opening penalty corner.

While Central were yet to recover from the setback, Customs effected another quick move towards the rival goal two minutes later, as Irshad Mirza latched onto the ball on the right and fired home to give his side a 2-0 advantage at half-time.

Just before the lemon break, Central were fortunate as their chances of a recovery would have diminished had their goalkeeper Herojit Singh not rushed out to block an acrobatic sweep by Stanly Fernandes off a Devender Walmiki cross from the right.

Central Railway brought about a welcome change to their strategy and looked effective in the second half. Soon after resumption, they pressed hard to stay alive in the match and initiated regular moves to put Customs under sudden pressure.

Off one such move, Rajeev Bhatkar despatched a rasping drive from the right which forced Customs goalkeeper Lincoln Taites to deflect it to safety.

Central Railway never lost focus, but Customs defended brilliantly while foiling every attempt.

Finally, Central succeeded in breaching the Customs defence and reduced the margin in the 66th minute when Babar Khan, who was lurking near the post, deflected home amidst a crowded defence.

undefined Central reduced the margin quite late in the game and had there been more time it could have been a different story.

Customs set up a clash with Indian Navy and the winner will qualify for the 12-team main draw league.

Results: Mumbai Customs 2 (Romeo Albuquerque, Irshad Mirza) bt Central Railway 1 (Babar Khan).

Fixtures for Friday:
FRIDAY: 7 a.m. Western Rly vs MS Police; 2.15 p.m. Pamposh XI, Orissa vs Lucknow United; 4.15 p.m. Indian Navy vs Mumbai Customs

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