Shillong Premier League 2021-22: Mawlai’s Manbha nets hat-trick over Malki

Shillong, Aug 12: A Manbha Iawphniaw hat-trick helped Mawlai SC demolish Malki SC 6-1 in the 36th match of the OC Blue Shillong Premier League 2021-22 at Third Ground, Polo, here today.

This was a match of firsts as Iawphniaw registered the first hat-trick this season. It was also the first time that any team scored six goals in a game and the first time that Mawlai have conceded in eight outings.

Besides Iawphniaw (24’, 58’, 74’), Mawlai’s other scorers were Nikelson Bina (26’), Samuel Lyngdoh Kynshi (37’) and Donlad Diengdoh (40’). Marchsterfield Marbaniang (86’) netted Malki’s goal long after Mawlai put the game to bed.

In the first leg, the two clubs met on 9 July when Mawlai were 4-0 winners. Coming into today’s game, Malki were second from the bottom with 4 points, while leaders Mawlai had 19.

Struggling Malki made several changes to the starting line-up but still found the going tough against unbeaten Mawlai. There were three lengthy delays in the first 20 minutes as Malki’s goalkeeper Rihoklang Khongjoh was knocked over twice by the opponents and one of their forwards, Kordor Dkhar, had a nasty fall after colliding with a Mawlai’s Samuel Kharsahnoh; Dkhar had to be taken to hospital by ambulance as a precautionary measure.

Then, within a spell of 16 minutes, Mawlai scored four times.

As he had done a couple of times earlier, Kynshi zipped in a ball across the face of goal and Iawphniaw at the far corner found the opening goal of the day. Just a couple of minutes later, Pynbha Suting laid one on for Bina who let loose a strong left-footer. Khongjoh may have been a little blindsided by his defenders but got his hands to the ball but it burst through and went into the net.

After a couple of missed chances of his own, Kynshi then got on the scoresheet by making a strong run into the box unmarked and aiming a shot low past the keeper. Next up, Diengdoh put Mawlai 4-0 up with Iawphniaw the provider of a cross that Khongjoh should have done better to gather or punch away at least. Instead, the ball slipped by him and Diengdoh easily tapped it in.

After the break, Mawlai continued to go for the jugular and a mistake just before an hour’s play by a Malki defender, who inadvertently passed the ball straight to Kynshi, led to a cross that Iawphniaw tapped in at the far post.

There have been plenty of players who have scored two goals in a game this season but Iawphniaw went one better and picked up a deserved hat-trick when he dived forward to meet a Bina cross and headed into the net, with Khongjoh once again getting his gloves to the ball but letting it through. Iawphniaw now has six goals for the season, putting him second in the race to be Top Scorer only behind Langsning FC’s Shano Tariang.

This was also the first time that any club had registered six goals in a single game but Mawlai then conceded late, with Marbaniang lobbing Neithovilie Chalieu in the 86th minute after a quick counterattack by Malki. Chalieu has been in goal for each of Mawlai’s matches, meaning that he was unbeatable for well over 700 minutes before conceding one today.

There will be no SPL match until 18 August when the Mawlai-Nangkiew Irat game postponed from 4 August will take place at 4pm.