THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Jammu & Kashmir Bank emerged champions of the 8th GV Raja All India Football Tournament defeating State Bank of Travancore (SBT) via tie-breaker 4-1 at the University Stadium here on Monday.
The second spot kick taken by SBT’s CJ Rinil hit the woodwork while J&K’s captain and goalkeeper Vickramjeet Singh brilliantly palmed away the right-footer from Martin John who attempted SBT’s third kick. For the winners, Nigerian recruits Kareem Omolaja and Badru Keke Ibrahim, Bilal Ahmad and Intikhab Alam traded in the shootout.
Earlier in the drab encounter, both teams remained goalless at the end of regulation time. Though SBT launched several attacks in the first half, none of them was converted.
Asif Saheer went close thrice within a space of three minutes in the first half but failed to convert.
Dribbling past three defenders, Saheer rolled the ball towards the far post but it went outside. The near scissor-cut attempt by Saheer, in front of an open goal in the 29th minuite, to finish off a lob from the right wing sailed over the bar. After 30 minutes, Saheer’s attempt to clip the ball over the opponent custodian also failed.
The second half lacked intensity as both teams played in the defence mode. J&K Bank failed to make a single co-ordinated move in the game. Strikers Hardip Singh and substitute Bilal Ahmad lacked the punch to pierce SBT’s defence line up.
J&K Bank received Rs one lakh for the win while SBT was awarded Rs 50,000. SBT’s Asif Saheer emerged the Player of the Tournament. The award for the Best Goalkeeper went to J&K’s Vickramjeet Singh.