Santosh Trophy: Meghalaya prevails over Rajasthan in five-goal thriller

Figo brace helps Meghalaya beat Rajasthan 3-2 in Malappuram on Monday.

Figo brace helps Meghalaya beat Rajasthan 3-2 in Malappuram on Monday. (Representative Image)   -  GETTY IMAGES

After being mauled 0-5 by Kerala in the opening match, Rajasthan showed plenty of spirit in its second match at the Santosh Trophy National Football Championship.

It may have lost 2-3 to Meghalaya on Monday, but it still was a commendable effort after the disappointment in the opener.

The match got off to an exciting start, with Rajasthan taking the lead in the second minute. Trilok Lohar’s throw-in from near the right corner flag into the six-yard box was headed just in front of the goalkeeper and it bounced into the back of the net.

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Meghalaya equalised after 23 minutes. On a counter-attack on the right flank, the left-footed long-ranger from Figo Syndai into the near post beat the Rajasthan goalkeeper Gajraj Singh.

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Figo struck again with six minutes remaining to put Meghalaya in front. He converted the excellent short pass from Shano Tariang on the right-wing.

Eleven minutes into the second half, Rajasthan made it 2-2. Imran Khan scored off a rebound from the Meghalaya goalkeeper Frolicson Dkhar.

Meghalaya went ahead just eight minutes later, this time from the penalty spot. The kick, awarded for Ankit Sharma’s charge against Stephanson Pale, was converted by Hardy Cliff Nongbri.

Rajasthan pressed hard for an equaliser again but didn’t succeed.

The result: Meghalaya 3 (Figo Syndai 25 & 39, Hardy Cliff Nongbri 64) bt Rajasthan 2 (Youraj Singh 2, Imran Khan 56).

Today’s matches: Services vs Gujarat (Malappuram) 4 p.m.; Manipur vs Odisha (Manjeri) 8 p.m.

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