National team conclude campaign on disappointing note
Due to a defensive lapse, just in the sixth minute into the first half, the local lads powered a corner kick right into the Lankan box area, which Maldivian Ali Ashfaq headed neatly by bisecting the Lankan defense. Goalie Sujan Perera’s valiant effort was of no avail as the home team notched up their second win of the tournament.
Skipper Sujan Perera, who put up a scintillating performance by foiling several close calls that would have had a major impact on the scoreline which stood 1-0 at the short whistle.
|Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa (R) is greeted by Ahmed Mahloof the Maldivian Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Development at the Velana International Airport in Male yesterday.|
After the turn around the visitors executed a different plan and went on to dominate play in rival territory. They further ran circles around the Maldivians defense searching for space in a bid to score the equalizer. Kavindu Ishan was the only player who was impressive and made some teasing moves to come closer to score in the dying stages of the game. However, due to poor coordination and supportive play by his teammates, many of the scoring chances went begging.
Sri Lanka made a couple of changes and was booked with four yellow cards, while the hosts had a single one.
The post-match statistics indicated there was nothing much between the teams, but Maldivian’s were slightly ahead in possessional play.
With this win, the hosts moved to the second slot with six points, with their earlier win against Bangladesh (2-0).
Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih and Sri Lankan Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa were among the special invitees.