Sreenidi Deccan exit Hero Super Cup with defeat to RoundGlass Punjab
17th April, Manjeri: Sreenidi Deccan FC fell to a 0-1 defeat to Hero I-League champions RoundGlass Punjab in the final Group A match of the Hero Super Cup here at the Payyanad Stadium on Sunday. The Deccan Warriors finished second behind Bengaluru FC in Group A as the latter qualified for the semifinal with a 1-1 against Kerala Blasters in Kozhikode.
Sreenidi Deccan made one change in their line-up from the 2-0 win against Kerala Blasters as Asheer Akhtar replaced the suspended Dinesh Singh in defence while RoundGlass Punjab also had to make a similar change at left-back with Mohammed Salah coming in for Naocha Singh.
It was Sreenidi Deccan who made the better start as they targeted Salah through Rosenberg Gabriel whose pace was a constant threat. This pressure led to a very early yellow card for Punjab defender Valpuia who fouled Sreenidi forward David Castaneda close to the Punjab penalty area. Castaneda then created Sreenidi Deccan’s best chance of the first half as he sent in a low cross from the right for Rilwan Hassan whose effort went straight at the RoundGlass Punjab goalkeeper Kiran Limbu.
By then, RoundGlass Punjab had taken control of the game and they took the lead in the 41st minute as Valpuia headed in a free-kick from Juan Mera. Rosenberg had a chance to level matters just before the break as he broke free on the right but his shot from a tight angle was saved by Kiran in the Punjab goal and it was 1-0 to the Hero I-League champions at half time.
The second half saw the Deccan Warriors attack with more intent but that resulted in them leaving space at the back for Punjab to exploit. Mera and forward Luka Majcen led numerous counter-attacks but Sreenidi Deccan goalkeeper Aryan Lamba and his defence stood firm. The introduction of winger Ramhlunchhunga and forward Louis Ogana did not have the desired effect for Sreenidi Deccan as RoundGlass Punjab closed out the match.