Shillong, April 12 (IANS) Eastern Sporting Union (ESU) defeated Sethu FC 2-0 in extra time in the semi-finals of the second edition of the Hero Indian Womens League (IWL) here on Thursday to set up a title clash with Rising Students Club.
Prameshwori Devi and Mandakini Devi scored after the 90 minutes of regulation time yielded no goals at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
A drab and slow first half saw both teams testing each other out. In a tactical battle in the midfield, neither team was able to cajole a clear goal scoring opportunity. Both goalkeepers had an easy first half, mopping up casual shots that came from distance.
The only highlight of the first half was in the 25th minute when Mandakini Devi found the back of the net through a sweet chip over the onrushing custodian but the referee called the play offside
Both teams went into the tunnel on level pegging at half-time as the scoreline read 0-0.
Changing over, and ESU maintained pressure on the Sethu FC defence line, constantly bombarding them with attacks.
In the 68th minute, Prameshwori Devi’s shot from distance hit the Sethu FC defence line and prompted her to appeal for a handball inside the box, but the referee thought otherwise.
Playing compactly, Sethu FC relied on counter-attacks and their defence line cleared dangerous long balls attempted by ESU. In the 76th minute, Prameshwori found Roja Devi in the box but the latter’s shot lacked venom and easily mopped up by the goalkeeper.
In the 85th minute, Roja Devi missed a sitter when she failed to tap-in from close range after Prameshwori Devi’s low cross found her inside the box. Two minutes later at the other end, Indumathi ran clear of the ESU defence line but shot wide.
The full-time scoreline read 0-0. In the 99th minute the deadlock was finally broken when Prameshwori smashed the ball into the back of the net to give ESU a solitary goal lead.
In the 105th minute, Mandakini scored directly from a free-kick to double ESU’s lead over Sethu FC.