Churchill hold East Bengal 2-2

Last Updated: Jan 29, 2011, 17:52 PM IST

Kolkata: Kayne Vincent struck twice to help
Churchill Brothers hold East Bengal 2-2 in a thrilling Round
12 I-League match at Yuba Bharati Krirangan here on Saturday.

In the battle between two title contenders, East Bengal
drew first blood through Sanju Pradhan in the 50th minute
while Tolgay Ozbey struck the second in the 70th.

But Churchill Brothers rode on a double-effort by
Vincent, who struck in the 67th and 90+1 minutes, to make a
superb turnaround and return with one point.

Vincent was adjudged man-of-the-match.

Unbeaten so far, table leaders East Bengal now have 30
points, while Churchill Brothers are on third place with 23
points.

Leading goal scorer Odafa Okolie, down with a thigh
muscle problem, did not play in the first half. Churchill
Brothers, bolstered by their national players -- Gouramangi
Singh and Steven Dias, did not give any chance to the home
side in the goalless first 45 minutes.

East Bengal were unlucky in the ninth minute when referee
P K Bose overlooked a handball inside the box leading to huge
uproar from the home crowd. East Bengal players led by coach
Trevor James Morgan also protested.

The Goan heavyweights, who went down to East Bengal in
the Federation Cup semifinal, had their chance to go up in the
17th minute but Kayne Vincent and Boima Karpeh messed up a
fine chance in the absence of Odafa.

Karpeh fired in directly at East Bengal goalkeeper Sandip
Nandy while from the rebound Vincent could have scored easily
but it turned out to be no different much to the relief of the
home crowd.

With Gouramangi manning the Churchill defence and Dias
setting it up in the mid-field region, East Bengal struggled
to get it going. They strikers Tolgay Ozbey and Robin Singh
struggled to get possession of the ball upfront.

PTI