Nalanda edge St.Thomas’ in a seven goal thriller

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  • Nalanda Colombo v St. Thomas College Matara - Schools football 2016 - Cooray Park - 30/6/ 2016 - Samindu Esara (L) of St. Thomas' dribbling his way into the box

Nalanda College managed to come from behind against St.Thomas’ College, Matara to win their Kotmale Chox U19 Schools Football Championship group encounter by a 4-3 score line in an entertaining end to end clash worked off at City League Football Complex.

The boys from Matara showed the better composure during the early exchanges as they displayed creativity and industry on either flanks.

However completely against the run of play Nalandians took a shock  lead after a partially cleared corner found the feet of Awishka Nipun who made no mistake in thumping the ball past a stranded keeper.

Despite the set back the visitors came back hard at the boys in red as they piled on the pressure yet again looking for an equalizer.

The equalizer arrived in a rather unexpected manner as a Dilshan Tharuka cross from the left found its way to the back of the net leaving the keeper helpless.

With the goal shifting the momentum towards the visitors they kept forcing the issue in search of the lead.

Hameed Al Husseinie edge out Royal

After a spell of possesion the St.Thomas’ lads found the back of the net thanks to their skipper Samindu Esara who latched on to the free kick which found his way through traffic.

The boys from Matara rallied with the wind in their sails as they managed to capture a 3rd in the 37th minute when an S.Ranganath corner found its way to a lively R.Sellahewa who pushed the ball home to an unguarded net.

The most controversial moment of the half arrived in the 43rd minute when a goal kick found its way to the feet of Awishka Nipun who pushed the ball into the net whilst the opposition froze to an offside flag from the linesman.

The on field referee though was quick to over turn the linesman and to award the goal as he claimed that a player cannot be offside off a goal kick, much to the disgust of the St.Thomas’ players and coaching staff.

The players went in for lemons shortly after with the Nalandian lads still having a job at hand trailing by a solitary goal.

The boys from Colombo showed more intent as the second half began as they managed to string together a couple of passes capitalizing on their possession.

Within a matter of minutes after the restart Nalanda managed to get back on level terms when Chamath Kodituwakku slammed the ball past the keeper after he latched onto a lose ball in the box.

Thomians steal Rajans’ Thunder

The momentum yet again shifted towards the boys in red as they kept pressing to grab the lead. St.Thomas’ boys on the other hand managed to cause some trouble of their own only to be denied in the final third by the lack of clinical finishing.

With tie turning into a seesaw battle it was Nalandians who grabbed a pricesless fourth when Nadishka Madishitha whipped in a cross from the left for Selaru Deematha tap the ball in to leave the visitors in disarray.

Despite their best efforts the hosts held on during the last exchanges as Nalanda managed to grab the points.

Dilshan Tharuka stood out for the St.Thomas’ lads despite his efforts in a losing cause as he was consistent on the left hand side for the visitors not to forget his opener and when got the ball running from the boys from Matara.

ThePapare.com Player of the Match: Dilshan Tharuka