Defending champs forced to play match in poor light as school sports body lets St Joseph's (Malad) play in former team's scheduled time after they mistakenly turn up to ground one day before
St Lawrence coach Lachman Singh Bisht was not a happy man despite his team's 2-1 victory over St Joseph's (Wadala) in the Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) boys' U-16 Division I inter-school football match at Azad Maidan yesterday.
St Lawrence's Adhikari Krish (centre) goes past St Joseph's David Lupheng (right) at Azad Maidan yesterday. Pic/Suresh KK
That's because the match was conducted in poor light. The fixture, originally scheduled for 4:30 pm, kicked off as late as 6:10 pm due to an extra match that was scheduled in between. It so happened that St Joseph's (Malad) yesterday mistakenly turned up at Azad Maidan for their fixture against Colaba Municipal that was scheduled for today. Now, Colaba Municipal were already at the ground as they had a fixture yesterday.
So rather than sending St Joseph's back to Malad straightaway, MSSA decided to make their trip worthwhile and requested Colaba Municipal to play their second match of the day, against the Malad school. Colaba Municipal agreed and the match was slotted prior to the Div I tie between St Lawrence and St Joseph's (Wadala).
Krish Adhikari scored a brace for defending champions St Lawrence while Amaan Mulani got the lone goal for the Wadala school. "Our boys are currently appearing for their exams, so we did not want to return back and so agreed to the late start. Conditions in the second half were even worse as it got darker and we couldn't sight the ball properly so we couldn't attack. We would have performed much better had the match begun at its scheduled time," coach Bisht said later.
MSSA's venue in-charge Akshay Sawant said that this was a one-off case. "St Joseph's turned up here by mistake for their fixture which was originally scheduled on Tuesday. But since their opponents were here already for another fixture we decided to conduct the match rather than send that Malad school back without playing," said Sawant.