KOCHI: A smart goalkeeper change midway through the tiebreaker helped Vasco pip Sesa 4-3 in an all-Goan final and win the DDL Sports Bhagath Cup all-India football tournament at the Maharaja’s Stadium here on Wednesday night.
With Sesa leading 3-2 in the tie-breaker, after the regulation period ended goalless, Vasco brought in substitute goalkeeper Siddhesh Morje in place of Milagrio Medeira.
That move clicked as Siddhesh thwarted Sesa’s next two attempts to give his team the title.
“Siddhesh is our tie-breaker specialist, that’s why we brought him when we were down,” said the Vasco coach Subrata Bhattarcharya a former junior international goalkeeper after the victory.
Siddhesh, incidentally, is a cool player under the bar having gained good experience in Goa’s inter-village tournaments which often end in tie-breakers, said his teammates.
Prasanta Chakraborty, goalkeeper Milagrio Medeira, Mario Crasto and Prajot Naik were successful for Vasco in the tie-breaker while Chanchal Saha shot over and for Sesa, Savio D’Carneiro, Prateesh Shrodker and Inaco Colaco scored while Gagandeep Singh and captain Nicolau Colaco’s attempts were thwarted by the Vasco’s 23-year-old goalie Siddhesh.
The match was a story of missed chances for a major part. Though Vasco appeared a shade superior in the opening session, Sesa had four good chances but Marcus Mascarenhas, Leslie Fernandes and Selwyn Fernandes and Prateesh Shirodker messed them.
Meanwhile, Vasco had two chances but Nigerian Koko Sakibu was denied both times by the Sesa goalkeeper Jason D’mello.
Sesa’s Inaco Colaco was adjudged as the player of the final while Vasco goalie Siddhesh Morje took the best goalkeeper prize.
K.P. Tomy, CEO of Cee Cee Holdings, KFA President K.M. I. Mather and DDL Sports’ Vinay Mathew gave away the prizes.