IWL: Gokulam Kerala puts 10 past Kenkre, Kryphsa stuns defending champ Sethu

Gokulam Kerala striker Sabitra Bhandari scored five in her side's 10-1 win over Kenkre FC, while defending champion Sethu FC lost 0-2 against Kryphsa FC.

Gokulam Kerala's Sabitra Bhandari celebrates one of her goals against Kenkre FC in the Indian Women's League (IWL) on Tuesday.   -  AIFF

Gokulam Kerala FC ran rout in its Indian Women’s League (IWL) fixture against Kenkre FC, registering a gargantuan 10-1 victory at the Bengaluru Football Stadium on Tuesday.

Gokulam’s Nepali striker Sabitra Bhandari was the star of the show, as she scored five goals. Karishma Shirvoikar notched-up a hat-trick for herself, while Manisha netted two more to make it 10 for the side from Kerala. Kenkre couldn’t get any foothold of the game as its counterpart completely blew it away and raced to a 7-1 lead going into half-time.

Gokulam opened the scoring in the seventh minute when a Sabitra effort was initially saved by Kenkre keeper Monika Devi, but the rebound fell to Karishma, who made no mistake to give her team the lead.

Sabitra continued to be the fulcrum of Gokulam’s attack, running circles around the Kenkre defence as it failed to find an answer. She linked up beautifully with Karishma throughout the game, forging a formidable partnership. Just like she had created Karishma’s opener, the young forward returned the favour by setting her up minutes later in the 17th minute. The goal of the game was scored by Manisha in the 30th minute, when her left-footed curler left everyone astounded, including the keeper, who was left stranded to the spot.

Bhandari completed her hat-trick in first-half stoppage time and added a further two in the second half. She also set up Karishma for her to wrap-up her three-goal haul. Kenkre’s defence looked clueless throughout the game, with its only consolation coming through skipper Soumya Guguloti’s beautiful solo effort in the 35th minute, but the headline had already been drafted.

- RATANBALA'S BRACE GUIDES KRYPSHA TO WIN OVER SETHU -

 Kryphsa FC registered a stunning 2-0 victory over defending champion Sethu FC in another IWL outing on Tuesday. Ratanbala Devi scored in either half to wrap up the three points, leaving the champion contemplating and wounded.

Kryphsa FC's Anju Tamang (No. 7) in action against Sethu FC in the Indian Women's League (IWL) on Tuesday.   -  AIFF

 

Sethu, however, had the better of the exchanges in the nascent stages but Kryphsa slowly caught up with the tempo. There wasn't much to differentiate the two sides in terms of possession. Sethu skipper Ashalata Devi led by example, as she thwarted danger on multiple occasions, most notably from Dangmei Grace’s mazy run, which was well-read by the veteran time and again.

Speaking of Grace, the Kryphsa captain deserves credit for making the starting eleven, after having picked up a horrendous injury during the IWL opener, following a nasty collision with Kickstart FC goalkeeper Rashmi Kumari.

The game seemed to be heading towards a goalless first half, but Grace had other ideas. In the second minute of first-half stoppage time, the Indian international disposed Sethu’s Sumithra in the middle of the park and fed a lurking Ratanbala with a quick through ball. Ashalata recovered in time to close down Ratanbala, but the latter exquisitely placed her effort to the keeper’s bottom left, from outside the box.

Sethu came out all guns blazing in the second half but the wind in its sails was subdued at the hour mark. Kryphsha pulled off a textbook training ground free-kick from just outside the box. With two volunteers, Anju Tamang and Ratanbala at the end of it, the former feinted her attempt, which prompted the Sethu wall to commit, leaving Ratanbala with a clear sight on goal, and clinical as ever, she made no mistake.

With some fine defensive solidarity, Krypsha saw out the remainder of the game and now looks like the team to beat, having scored six in two games, conceding none. 

THE RESULTS:

1) Gokulam Kerala FC - 10 (Karishma Shirvoikar 3’ 17’ 51’, Sabitra Bhandari 7’, 19’, 45+2’, 48’, 61’, Manisha 20’ 30’) beat Kenkre FC - 1 (Soumya Guguloth 35’).

2) Kryphsa FC - 2 (Ratanbala Devi 45+2’, 60’) beat Sethu FC - 0.

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