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MSSA U-16: Shubham Sawant fires SVIS into quarterfinals

15-year-old scores as Borivli side register 1-0 victory over Lakshdham High School to enter Division IV quarter-finals 

Riding on Shubham Sawant's solitary goal, Swami Vivekanand International School (Borivli) registered a 1-0 win over Lakshdham High School (Goregaon) to enter the quarter-finals of the Mumbai Schools Sports Association boys' U-16 Division IV inter-school football tournament at Azad Maidan yesterday.

Mandar Angchekar (right) of SVIS tries to score past goalkeeper Gautam Sutar (left) at Azad Maidan yesterday. Pics/Suresh KK
Mandar Angchekar (right) of SVIS tries to score past goalkeeper Gautam Sutar (left) at Azad Maidan yesterday. Pics/Suresh KK 

Shubham scored the all-important goal in the sixth minute when he dribbled past two defenders to slot the ball into the bottom left of the goal. The Borivli side didn't participate in MSSA tournaments for the last two seasons across all age groups, since the principal back then wanted the kids to focus on studies. This year, with a new principal taking charge, the kids got an opportunity to represent their school in the MSSA tournaments.

The 15-year-old goalscorer, who represented the school in the U-10, U-12 and U-14 categories, said he missed representing his school and hoped to help his school earn a promotion to Division III this year.

Shubham Sawant
Shubham Sawant 

"It's not a great feeling to play in Division IV, since we played in Division II earlier. It was frustrating to not play football for the team. We would play with friends in our society, but representing your school is a different thing. This being my last year in school, I want to ensure I help the team earn promotion to Division III," said the Class X student.

Coach Vasant Anchan said that it would be difficult for him to get the team back to Division II. "These boys had a gap of two seasons and barely practised. Had they not missed these two seasons, they could have earned promotion to Division I. I will have to work really hard to get back the team to Division II," said Anchan.

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