Isaac Aba found his goal scoring touch with a brace as Crystal Palace got their first win of the Super 8 defeating Java Lane 2-1 at the CR&FC.
Aba, one of the highest goal scorers this season had not lived up to expectation in the Super 8’s missing a few chances and a couple of penalties. However playing against Java Lane, who has the worst record in the Super 8’s having lost all five the lads from Gampola sensed a win and went for the kill.
Palace had possession and territory throughout the 90 minutes camped inside the opposition half but the defensive Java Lane gave no chances to shoot in the early going.
Java Lane attacked on the counter and should have scored if not for Afam Akram’s weak efforts. He twice, after going clean through shot straight at goalkeeper Ranga Nawarathna much to the dismay of his teammates and fans.
Soon after the second missed chance, Crystal Palace punished Java Lane as Aba faked a cross on Rewin Kumar to come into the box on the left and scored past the near post of Dammika Senarath.
Even after going down it was Java Lane who looked more threatening but once again poor finishing let them down with Captain Rizkhan Faizer’s effort saved by Nawarathna at his near post.
Java Lane made a tactical move for the final 45 minutes bringing forward Faizer, dropping Naveen Jude to midfield and shifting Malaka Perera to the right. With that change the Slave Island lads looked more in control but were unable to find a breakthrough.
Towards the end Java lane pulled a goal back when Afam Akram ghosted in between a Nawarathna and Buddhika Silva miscommunication to steal the ball and clip it over the onrushing goalkeeper. The goal livened up the match till the end but Java Lane was unable to find an equalizer.
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Meanwhile in the other fixture goals by Kavindu Ishan and Shanaka Udesh late in the game gave Air Force a 2-0 win against Blue Star.