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Alburz now closer to qualification - highlight

3 Oct, 2012

The northern zone’s Simorgh Alborz faced central Oqaban Hindokush on Thursday in the third week of the Roshan Afghan Premier League, hoping for a spot in next week semi-finals.

In the first half Alborz put on a tough offense, showing why it is ranked the second team on the RAPL ladder and evidently hungry for a goal.

Its first opportunity was in the 21st minute when Omid Naseeb stole the ball from the attacking Oqaban team and quickly carried forward towards the Oqaban goal. He took a shot from 30 meters distance, but the ball just missed.

A minute later, Alborz forward Muneerulhaq Nadeem fouled Abdul Sabour Seayar and received a yellow-card warning from the referee.

At minute 29 Alborz had its best chance of scoring a point in the first half. Naseeb attacked Oqaban box through the center and passed the ball to Nadeem on his left, who was totally ignored by Oqaban defence. But Nadeem’s shot was not accurate. The ball bounced off one the defense players and beyond the boundary.

Alborz’ attacks intensified but to no avail. The first half ended 0:0.

The pressure of the team from the North was awarded in the 48th minute when Nadeem carried the ball into Oqaban’s box from the right side, passed to Naseed, who was waiting free on the left side and he took a shot. Oqaban keeper Abdul Azim Hamidi attempted to prevent the ball hitting the net, in vain.

Oqaban, currently ranked fourth of the eight RAPL teams, attempted to level the score with a good opportunity only two minutes after Alburz had taken 1:0 lead.

Alborz’ defense kicked the ball coming from a corner shot from the right out of the penalty box. Oqaban’s Zamaray Salangi was waiting in prime position – he shot immediately, but missed.

Despite Oqaban’s attempts to score, they were ultimately undone by Alborz which scored for the second time in the 54th minute. Naseeb crossed the ball from the left side to the far bar from a free kick which was received by Nadeem who headed the ball into the net, 2:0

Finally in the 70th minute Oqaban had its first clear chance of a shot and even scored, but the sideline referee had already raised his flag to indicate an offside.

Oqaban’s second chance came quickly only two minutes later.

Defense player Mohammad Ghaforr Asir carried the ball all the way down to Alborz’ half. Facing no challenges from the Alborz defense, he took a shot from 25 meters away. The ball went through to the right corner to the net. 2:1.

With still more than ten minutes left in the match, Oqaban was encouraged to seek a tie and its forward players worked the Alborz defense, which was clearly weekening, hard. But it wasn’t successful.

Just one minute before the match ended Oqaban’s forward player Zamaray Salangi was given a red card because he fouled and injured his adversary.

Winning over Oqaban, Alborz reached 4 points in Group B and has a good chance of qualifying for the semi-finals. It depends how Mawjhai Amu plays on Friday versus the Group B leader Toofan Harirod. If Amu beats Harirod with a two goal difference, Alborz will not qualify because it scored seven goals but also saw the ball seven times in its own net.

The RAPL continues on Thursday with a match between Shaheen Asmayee of Kabul and De Abasin Sape from Southeast Afghanistan - two teams, which have already failed to qualify for the semi-finals.

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