MOHAMMEDAN SPORTING FELL just short of a fairytale victory in the Durand Cup today when they beat Jamshedpur FC 6-0.
MSC came into this game with a near-impossible task ahead. If they wanted to get into the Durand Cup quarter finals, they would have to beat Jamshedpur FC by 7 goals. Not the young JFC side playing in Durand was the toughest team to beat; but 7 goals are tough to get against anybody.
But that's what MSC, with former India captain Mehrajuddin Wadoo as their head coach, almost accomplished. They started scoring early with Lalremsanga striking twice in the first 15-odd minutes, and David Lalhansanga took it from there.
Although towards the middle stretch of the match JFC managed to stop the flow of goals, as the young lands got tired David took ver the show again. He completed his hat-trick with about 10 minutes left in the match and just before regulation time ran out; he scored a fourth goal.
With David's performance of a lifetime, and a critical penalty save by Lalbiakhlua Jongte, MSC were within touching distance of a story for the ages.
But despite getting 7 minutes extra to get the 7th goal, that's where their streak of strikes ended. By 1 goal, they fell short of a quarter final berth; due to being behind Group A runner up Mohun Bagan by goal difference.
The result was a heartbreak for the Kolkata club that has always held ambitions for winning major titles. But the fighting spirit displayed by the Black Panthers is a good sign for the rest of the season; as they try to win the I-League and make their way to the ISL.