IWL: Eastern Sporting Union thrash JIT FC 7-1

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New Delhi, Jan 28: Kamala Devi and Kashmina M S struck a hat-trick each as Eastern Sporting Union (ESU) of Manipur thrashed Jeppiaar Institute of Technology FC, Puducherry 7-1 in a round-robin league match of the inaugural Indian Women's League here today, January 28.

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Kamala, a national team striker, scored in the 44th, 62nd and 83rd minutes while her partner upfront Kashmina found the target in the 71st, 88th and 90th minutes.

ESU Imphal team (Image courtesy: Indian Football Team Twitter handle)

Y Premi Devi scored the other goal for the Imphal outfit in the 77th minute. For the Puducherry team, R Sandhya scored the lone goal in the 63rd minute at the Ambedkar Stadium here.

The first goal for Eastern Sporting Union came at the stroke of half-time with Kamala Devi placing her right footer to perfection, placing the ball to the right corner of the net.

The goal apart, Eastern Sporting Union stayed dominant all throughout the first-half. They pushed back JIT into their own half and quite a number of times sneaked in past the last line of defence.

But with Kashmina and Kamala fumbling inside the box, ESU had to wait. Changing over, JIT responded with a counter-attack but ESU survived as the ball hit goalkeeper E Panthoi Chanu's legs and rolled out.

But ESU were quick to regroup. With the JIT defence playing a high line of defence, Kamala Devi held back her run for that split second and then had all the time in the world to slot it home in the 62nd minute.

However, JIT reduced the margin the very next minute with the tireless Sandhya beating the onrushing Panthoi and managing to tap it in into the empty net.

Kashmina made it 3-1 in the 71st minute before Premi Devi, manning the midfield with the legendary Bembem Devi with elan, leaping above all to head the ball home six minutes later.

Kamala completed her hat-trick in the 83rd minute, getting past a couple of defenders and slotting it home.

Kashmina scored her second in the 88th minute and then followed it up with another goal in the 90th minute to complete her hat-trick.

Earlier in the morning, 2016 AIFF Player of the Year Sasmita Malik's hat-trick set the tone for the inaugural edition of the IWL as Rising Student Club, Odisha came back from behind to beat Aizawl FC 6-1 in the opening match of the tournament.

PTI

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