Chandigarh: Pune FC Under-17s made history of sorts for themselves by claiming the all-India 12th Administrator's Cup at the Section 42 Football Ground here on Tuesday.
In the final, Pune FC got the better of Mahilpur Football Academy 2-1 and in the process finished the tournament with an all-win record that comprised five matches. The winners struck their goals through Amos Lalnienga (38th) and Omega (58th) after trailing through a 26th-minute goal.
For Pune FC, who comprise boys from the Penninsula Pune Football Club Academy, the feat was a first ever since the Under-17s were made into a residential batch in 2013-14. Having performed as a successful unit, Pune FC had to keep out injured midfielder Prakash Sarkar, which in itself was a major blow.
Beginning proceedings with caution, Pune FC did well to work up a few chances despite playing against a well-supported home team in hot conditions. Three chances went abegging with striker Aniket Jadhav missing out on a one-on-one opportunity; Amos then sprayed his try across the goalmouth, before Sunil Mane had an unfortunate miss when his attempt went over the goal by inches.
The local side had most of its attacks woven from the right. Against the run of play, Pune FC, off a counter attack for the first time, went into arrears. However, twelve minutes later Pune FC equalised. Off a short-corner taken between Omega and Sajid, the latter crossed to have Amos head in and level the scores.
Playing out the reminder of the half in a dominant role, Pune FC returned for the second session going after the opponents. Omega, in one such thrust down the right flank did well to release a left-footed long ranger that dipped over the keeper and just under the bar to help Pune FC lead 2-1.
Thereafter, the home side went all out and pressured Pune FC defence which was handled well by Gaurav Bora and Tarif Akhand. Adding up to support was keeper Iprotip who rose to the occasion by punching away a host of dangerous crosses.