New Delhi: Army Boys, Danapur, Bihar and OM Roy HS, Meghalaya advanced to the semifinals in the U-17 Boys` category of the 54th Subroto Cup by defeating NCC (West Bengal & Sikkim) and BSL, Jhakhand in their respective quarterfinals at the Ambedkar Stadium here on Tuesday.
While Army Boys, Bihar outplayed NCC (West Bengal & Sikkim) 1-0 thanks to a first-half strike by Saroj Rai, Meghalaya went through courtesy a couple of late goals by Mebanshan Suting.
Army Boys, Bihar and Meghalaya will face each other in the semifinals on October 12.
The match between Army Boys & NCC was a one-sided affair with the former enjoying the upper hand. NCC played better in the second half and did create a few chances but were let down by poor finishing. They almost equalised 10 minutes from the end but Bijoy Jirel hit the upright from close range.
The second quarterfinal of the day witnessed a dour, defensive battle since both teams preffered to adopt a defensive approach. For most of the game, scoring chances were few and far between and those that did materialise, were successfully dealt with by both defences.
Meghalaya clinched the issue late in the second half as Suting took advantage of a tiring Jharkhand defence.
"It was a tough match since their players are extremely fit and they have a very strong defence," Meghalaya coach said after the match. "I am happy, but also relieved. We have beaten a very strong team today."
In another match, Oman suffered their second consequtive defeat as a much superior Goa registered an easy 2-1 win. The Goan team includes several members of the Indian U-17 squad.
In the girls` section, skipper Dorothi hogged the limelight with four goals as Burguri High School, Assam thrashed Dona Paula HS of Goa 5-0.
Ahlcon Public School of Delhi survived some torrid times in the second period to hold a much superior IPSC girls to a goal less draw.