Forward Iain Hume struck a hat-trick to guide Kerala Blasters FC to a thrilling 3-1 victory over Delhi Dynamos in their Indian Super League (ISL) clash at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here in the national capital on Wednesday evening.
The win, only their second in nine matches, takes Kerala two spots up to sixth position on the ISL points table. For Delhi Dynamos, it was another night to forget at their home ground as they continued to languish at the bottom of the table.
Hume struck first in the first session to give his team the lead, only for Pritam Kotal to equalise just before half time. In the second session, Hume struck form as he completed his hat-trick with goals in the 78th and 83rd minutes.
David James, who took over as the head coach of Kerala after Rene Meulensteen parted ways with the club, saw his side open the scoring early in the game, thanks to a neat finish from Hume.
In the 12th minute of the game, after some good work by Courage Pekuson down the left where he got past Pritam Kotal to get inside the box, Hume was on hand to slot the ball home.Things were going well for Kerala Blasters, but Dimtiri Berbatov had to come off due to what looked like a hamstring injury in the 40th minute.
And just before half time, Pritam Kotal leveled the scores for the home side. The right back was unmarked at the far post from a Romeo Fernandes free kick and he rose to guide the ball past the Kerala goalkeeper.
Both teams went into the break locked 1-1. After the restart, Delhi Dynamos showed more impetus going forward. Lallianzuala Chhangte put in a few good balls into the box for the Delhi forwards to take advantage of. But it was Hume who gave his side the lead again in the 77th minute.
After taking the balll from a throw-in, Hume charged into the box taking on defenders before slotting the ball past the Delhi keeper. Ten minutes before full time, Hume settled the tie with a third on the night. A Mark Sifneos through ball put Hume through on goal, and the Canadian international lifted the ball over the onrushing keeper to complete his hat-trick.