Oil India Limited dethroned defending champion Assam State Electricity Board in the Assam Club Championship at Bokakhat on 23rd DEC with a 4-1 victory in a rematch of last year's final. Looking to avenge the defeat at the hands of the ASEB in the previous final, the OIL team played smart football and dominated the game throughout.The OIL think tank chose the 1-4-5-1 formation to the ASEB's 1-4-4-2 pattern and it proved to be a winning strategy. OIL took the lead with captain Birjab Mushahary's winger off a corner as early as in the sixth minute. Durga Boro scored the second goal three minutes later. After missing several scoring opportunities, ASEB bounced back in the 39th minute through captain Suresh Das. The first half ended with a 2-1 score.Mushahary gave OIL a good start with a goal in the ninth minute of the second half. Mintu Boro scored the fourth and last goal for OIL in the 20th minute to take the match beyond ASEB. ASEB goalkeeper Mintu Sonowal again failed to put up a good performance, which compounded his team's woes. ASEB's Suresh Das was adjudged the best player of the meet, Manash Manjit Chetia of Nepathya Club of Jorhat was the top scorer and Jintu Chetri of OIL the best goalkeeper. Salbagan Sports Club won the fair play trophy. Former national player Amal Changmai, sports joint secretary Pranab Kumar Bora, Golaghat SP P.C. Saloi, Bokakhat subdivisional officer (civil) Ranjit Hazarika, Assam Football Association vice-president Jatin Bora, joint secretary Tapan Hazarika and senior officials of the Numaligarh Refinery Ltd were present at the prize distribution ceremony.OIL had blanked out Salbagan Sports Club of Gossaigaon 2-0 on its way to the final, while ASEB defeated 9th APBN 2-0 and Assam Rifles 7-6. As many as 23 teams competed in the tournament. The champion squad will get to play in the National B-Division league.
Kaushik Hazarika, Bokathat