02 December, 2011
Nepal 1-1 Maldives
Off the targets
Maldives were enjoying most of the possession in starting minutes but were overcrowded by rejuvenated Nepalese side. Graham Roberts' side looked a better team against the Hungarian coach's Maldives.
Although, Nepal shared most part of the possession and attempts in the first half, neither Nepal or Maldives were able to hit the target. First Biraj Maharjan then Sandip Rai's effort was high and wide for Nepal. Literally there weren't any shots on targets.
Ali Ashfaq, Captain Marvelous
As the match developed, Nepal were playing nervously in the end of first half and Maldives skipper capitalised it. He struck a scorcher from outside the d-box to the top left corner of Kiran Chemjong's post. It was so wonderfully shot, Nepalese keeper couldn't do anything about it.
Sandip Rai leaps to head home
The mounting pressure of Nepal was given off by Maldives after all. In 52', Sandip Rai headed in the corner to make it all square. Robin could have made 2-1 to Nepal after two minutes but his shot from the left hit the woodwork.
Bijay Gurung who came in latter stages of the selection proved he was a player to be scared of. His ball control and passing was second to none except some slow responses. Anil Gurung on the other hand utilised the ball well and didn't wasted them.
Both Biraj and Robin played sublimely as the Classic Brazilian backs. Their crosses from right and left were very nice. Only few were wasted.
Bharat Khawas and Sandip Rai demonstrated great play with Khawas often surging ahead.
Final minutes Syndrome
Nepalese National team salvaged a point against the Maldives team which they could have won all three points. Nepalese team still lacked consistency in the final minutes of each half. In added minute of first, they gave away the goal and in the end of second half they were lucky not to concede from three corners and few freekicks. Overall Nepal played brilliantly but you need to hit the target to increase the chances to score a goal and eventually win the game.
Nepal will play against strongest of Group 'B' Bangladesh on 4th of December. Best of luck for Nepal National team.
Ram Gurung, Analyst of Nepalifootball.com