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United reigns in five-a-side

Zanzeer Singh
Monday, March 03, 2014

THE Abinesh Salesh Samy captained United Sangam team took out the inaugural Design Engineering five-a-side soccer tournament at the South Seas Club ground in Lautoka yesterday.

United Sangam defeated Abbu Zahid Shaheed's Tigers team 3-1 in the final.

Tigers proved to be unlucky in the encounter conceding two easy goals. The side dominated the second spell but failed to find the net hitting the post on five occasions.

United Sangam also had the services of Edward Justin and Madre Varan.

Tigers defeated Rifle Range 2-1 in the semi-final. Shaheed netted the winning goal.

The second semi-final between the star studded Combine Brothers team and United Sangam proved to be a fiery one with two red cards.

Combine Brothers was laced with district reps including Alifereti Baleiloa, Gerrad Voi, Taslim Rahiman, Jone Salauneune, Zibraaz Sahib and Alvin Avinesh.

Salauneune was sent off after a foul on Samy. Madre was also given the marching orders following a serious foul.

Samy set up Justin to score the winning goal to upset the favourites.

2009 Mini Pacific Games squash bronze medallist Romit Meghji and Fiji number one Justin Ho represented the P Meghji team.

Tournament organiser Faiaaz Ali said some teams had to be turned away because they were late in paying the registration fees.

Ali said this was the start with bigger things to follow.

"There was a discussion with the team managers and it was decided to play the matches on a round robin basis," he said.

"So each team got to play seven games before the semi-finals. It was good to watch the young talents display their skills.

"District reps from Lautoka and Ba competed in the tournament. We also had some snooker and squash players donning their soccer boots.

"We are thankful to Abdul Khaiyum Rafiq of Design Engineering to get things rolling after disruptions by the adverse weather conditions in the last couple of weeks.

"For the next tournament there will be restrictions on the number of district players per team. This is in a bid to create an even playing field."

P Meghji will sponsor the next tournament.

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