Abahani romp to Bordoloi Trophy
A double-strike from Mehdi Hasan Ujjal guided Abahani to the Bordoloi Trophy as the three-time Bangladesh League champions handed an easy 3-0 defeat to Nepal's Three Star in the final of the 59th edition of the provincial meet in Assam yesterday.
Apart from the Ujjal brace, new midfielder Imtiaz Sultan Jitu struck the other to give the Sky Blues a glorious moment on foreign soil long time after their second triumph in 1994.
It was the third title triumph on foreign soil for the Sky Blues, who won all three tournaments in India. The Dhanmondi-based outfit first won the Nagjee Trophy in 1990 beating Indian side Mahendra United and grabbed the Charms Cup five years later defeating Kolkata Mohammedan.
With the achievement, Abahani also put their bitter rivals Mohammedan Sporting Club behind in terms of achieving trophies on foreign soil as the Black and Whites won two tournaments, namely the Ashish-Jabbar Trophy and Airlines Trophy -- both in India.
However, Abahani are the second Bangladeshi team to win the Bordoloi Trophy after Brothers Union, who won it in 2004.
The Sky Blues produced brilliant performance in the final and took 17 minutes to assert authority as proven midfielder Ujjal found the back of the Three Star net and Jitu, a discovery of Brazilian coach Edson Silva Dido, doubled the margin five minutes from the break.
After the break, Abahani brought about three changes sending on goalkeeper Himel, defender Kamal Hossain and striker Alfaz Ahmed, who struck the all-important goal in the semifinal against Shillong Lajong on September 13.
Ujjal, Jitu and Ghanaian striker Franco constantly kept the Three Star defenders busy and it was again Ujjal, who sealed the fate of the match striking his second in the 75th minute, according to a message received here after the game.
Nevertheless, the triumph in the Bordoloi Trophy will boost the Sky Blues, who took this tournament as a part of their preparation for the upcoming domestic competitions as well as forming a well combination, especially after some of their last season's key players left the team reducing its strength from last season's squad.
It was also a stage for Abahani to test their foreign recruits and locals before signing them in the upcoming transfers.
"We are happy to see the performance of those who we want to rely on in the coming season," said match-hero Ujjal adding that they got a clear concept through the tournament on where Abahani now stand.
Abahani are scheduled to return home tomorrow.
SQUAD: Zia (Himel), Samad Yousuf, Nazrul, Mamun Mia, Linkon, Ibnul Siraji (Kamal), Ujjal, Pranotosh, Jitu, Franco and Aminu (Alfaz Ahmed).