St Anne’s (Malad) defeated Navy Children (Colaba) 2-0 in yesterday’s Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) inter-school U-16 Div II semi-final to earn promotion to Div I after a gap of two years.
Adrian D’cunha and Francis Periera ensured St Anne’s secure passage to the first division with well taken goals at Azad Maidan yesterday.
In an eventful first half, Adrian headed the ball in off a corner kick to give St Anne’s an early lead. Navy Children missed out on an opportunity to level the scores from the penalty spot after St Anne’s was penalised for handling the ball inside the penalty box.
Navy Children skipper Akshaj Saini failed to capitalise on a rebound after his initial shot from the spot was blocked by Karan Vira, who replaced goalkeeper Rohan Arote for the penalty kick. Akshaj blasted the ball over the bar.
In the second half, St Anne’s dominated proceedings. Francis added to their tally with a tap in from close range minutes from the final whistle.
Goalscorer Adrian said: “It feels great to win this match, we always dreamt of bringing our team into the first division. After scoring the first goal our strategy was just to defend the game.”
St Anne’s captain Slawyn Mascaranhas believes his team were well prepared for the game. “We were well prepared for this match as we had seen their (Navy Children) earlier games.”
Ex-coach Joseph Monteiro lauded St Anne’s efforts. “It’s a dream come true and big achievement for us as we were in the first division since 1989 to 2009. We also won the title twice in 1994 and 1995, apart from finishing runners-up three times (1996, 1997 and 1998). We were relegated in 2010 and since then we wanted to come back into the first division.”
B-14-I-D: St Stanislaus (Bandra) 4 beat St Andrew’s (Bandra) 0.
B-16-III-SF: St Xavier’s (Bhandup) 1 beat St Theresa (Bandra) 0. B-16-II-SF: St Lawrence (Kandivali) 1 beat St Mary’s ICSE (Mazagaon) 0.