Srinagar: J&K Bank Academy won the second phase of first Mufti Mohammad Syed Memorial (MMSM) Gold Cup League Football Tournament-2017, defeating Iqra FC Bandipora in the final match played at Synthetic Turf TRC in Srinagar on Sunday.
The final which started at 2.00 pm, was witnessed by thousands of football fans, who had converged to the venue from almost all parts of the Valley. Despite chill, the enthusiasm of the fans was huge. The enthusiasm of fans from district Bandipora was huge as they had travelled a long distance to watch their football heroes perform at the Synthetic Turf. In the closely contested encounter, J&K Bank Academy prevailed upon Iqra FC by two goals to nil.
Right from the start of the match, the teams played aggressive football. While forward lines of both the teams made attacks on each other’s goal post frequently in first 10 minutes of the play, the defence lines ensured that no damage was done. Ateeb Shafi opend the account for Bank Academy in 10th minute, but they could hold the lead only till 26th minute when Bandipora team scored an equalizer through Umar Farooq. After that no team could score and the first half ended 1-1.
The second half also witnessed intense clash between the forwards and defenders of the two teams. While forward line was busy in making attempts to score, the defence lines were equal to the task to thwart any scoring opportunity. But in 60th minute of the play, a penalty kick was awarded in favour of Bank Academy. Ateeb Shafi without any mistake converted it into a goal and giving a crucial lead to his team.
In the last minutes of the match, Iqra Sports players tried their best to score an equaliser, but failed at the last moment. The high speed and the quality of the football displayed by both the teams enthralled the spectators. When referee blew the final whistle, the score line read 2-1 in favour of JK Bank Academy.
Despite losing the final, Iqra Sports won the hearts of fans by playing fearless football throughout the event. By making it to the finals of second phase, both Iqra FC and Bank Academy teams have qualified for third phase of the event where six premier clubs and two Jammu province teams will battle it out.