Khayyal inspires HBL to victory

KARACHI: Khayyal Mohammad’s goal helped Habib Bank Limited (HBL) snatch a 1-0 victory against Faisalabad’s PMC Athletico while Pak Elektron Limited (PEL) produced their maiden win of the season with a surprise 1-0 triumph over Navy in matches of the Pakistan Premier Football League on Wednesday.

At the Peoples Sports Complex here, Khayyal scored the solitary goal in the 19th minute on a corner kick to take HBL points to 12 from eight outings while PMC Athletico are struggling with two points from nine games.

“We got a crucial three points and I am happy with the result. We were missing our five key players but we still managed to win,” HBL manager Yousuf Khan told ‘The News’.

At the Sadiq Shaheed Stadium in Quetta, PEL stunned Navy with an eighth minute strike from Ghulam Reza Senior to take their points to six from eight meetings while Navy finished their first round before Ramadan with just nine points from ten games.

“We missed more than a dozen chances. We were in complete command but failed to score which is disappointing,”Navy coach Khalid Zubair said from the team bus on their way to Karachi from Quetta.

In another game at the same venue, Muslim FC were given a walkover when PAF failed to turn up for the match. With the victory, Mulsim FC stretched their points to ten from six matches while PAF, who also forfeited their previous game against Baloch FC the other day due to security concerns, are reeling at four points from ten appearances.

After the ugly incident last week when the PAF players and assistant referee Nasir Ahmed were attacked by Afghan FC players and fans, the PAF had submitted a written request with the match commissioner and the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) four hours before their next meeting against Baloch FC on Monday but the match commissioner gave walkover in favour of the local club.

Following that incident, Karachi-based teams vowed that they would demand thick security when they travel to Quetta after Ramadan.

“We will write to the PFF and unless we are provided security through FC commandos we will not play any game in Quetta,” one of the Karachi-based teams officials told this correspondent while pleading anonymity.

Today’s fixtures: Police v Army (Sadiq Shaheed Stadium, Quetta), KPT v WAPDA (KPT Stadium, Karachi), NBP v KRL (Peoples Sports Complex, Karachi).