Sagar`s late strike give Nepal first win SAFF C`ship

New Delhi: Sagar Thapa scored a late goal to help Nepal beat Bangladesh 1-0 in a league match and register their first win in the ongoing SAFF Championships on Sunday.

Sagar (90th) scored with a curling free-kick in the injury time to give Nepal an important victory in Group B at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.

By virtue of this win, Nepal has moved to four points from two matches, while Bangladesh, who failed to convert numerous chances, stay on one point from as many games.

Both Nepal and Bangladesh drew their opening matches in the tournament.

While Nepal held Maldives 1-1, Bangladesh played a goalless draw against Pakistan.

Nepal will face Pakistan in their final league match on Tuesday, while Bangladesh will be up against Maldives.

In a match where both teams had their equal share of chances, Nepal were quick to start off the blocks.

The initial thrust, which has been a hallmark of Nepal`s play, pushed Bangladesh on the defensive right from the opening whistle.

Keen on making optimum use of the flanks, Nepal kept the Bangladeshi goalkeeper Sahidul Alam busy throughout the encounter, but their forwards failed to capitalise on the crosses, much to the disappointment of the 2000 odd Nepali fans present in the stadium.

After a barren first half, Bangladesh depended on counter-attacks and made numerous raids into the rival box.

Bangladesh`s best chance came in the 80th minute when Atiqur Rahaman`s free header from close range was saved by an alert Nepalese goalkeeper Kiran Limbu.


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