Mahindra enter IFA Shield final

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Kolkata, Mar 5 (UNI) Defending champion Mahindra United entered the final of the 113th IFA Shield, defeating Churchill Brothers in the tie-breaker 6-4 (1-1) here today.

The first semifinal saw both sides level at 1-1 till the end of 120 minutes which resulted in a tie-breaker.

The Mahindra players got all their shots right in the tie-breaker, while Churchill fell one short when its defender Govin Singh saw his attempt coming off the upright.

N P Pradeep, Yusif Yakubu, Manjit Singh, Harpreet Singh and Mohammad Rafi scored for the Mumbai outfit. On the other hand, Churchill could not recover from the deficit created by Govin Singh's miss.

Iyomi Mboyo, Thangjam Singh and Khantang Paite scored for Churchill.

The action in the regulation time was lifeless with both teams preferring safe soccer rather than going all out for a win. The first session ended barren with Churchill, the I-league runner-up, enjoying a greater share of the possesion.

Iyomi Mboyo, Churchill's Congolese striker, worked relentlessly to break free but found himself heavily policed by the Jeepmen from Mumbai. Yusif Yakubu was also bottled up inside the Churchill defence.

Mboyo used a set-piece situation to find the lead in the 71st minute. A swerving freekick by the Churchill striker beat the Mahindra custodian Subhasish Roy Chowdhury.

Mahindra staged their come back a minute later. Steven Dias set a measured cross for unmarked Manjit Singh, who nodded home. Dias earned two chances in extra-time. The first attempt was saved on the goalmouth by Churchill defender Gourmangi Singh, while the second came off the upright.

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