KRL held by gutsy SNGPL in PPFL Multan leg

KRL held by gutsy SNGPL in PPFL Multan leg

Multan, 5 October 2018: The 12th Pakistan Premier Football League 2018 continued with its Multan leg matches at the Qilla Kohna Qasim Bagh Stadium with two drawn results last night.

The 8:30pm kick-off saw Muslim FC Chaman being held to a 0-0 draw by Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA). Despite having most of the possession, Muslim FC failed to capitalise and struggled to create more direct chances. PCAA also only infrequently tested Muslim FC’s defence.

Even a brief cameo by Muslim FC’s veteran deadball specialist Hayatullah in final 10-15 minutes failed to break the deadlock as the match finished goalless and both sides still searching for an elusive win.

The 10:45pm game saw PPFL title challengers Khan Research Labs (KRL) take on top division debutants Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd (SNGPL). Always the favourites, KRL started positively and regularly made forays into the SNGPL box, who in turn did well to defend and play the counter whenever opportunity arose.

It took a bit of luck to open the scoring. A long punt from KRL goalkeeper after an SNGPL attack saw the ball land awkwardly between the SNGPL defender and goalkeeper. Their hesitation to clear allowed KRL’s Iftikhar Ali Khan to quickly pounce and nudge the ball into the net to make it 1-0 as the first half concluded.

Never to be outdone, SNGPL responded positively in 2nd half and Samad Khan smartly equalised after a good move by his team-mates allowing him to score and make it 1-1. SNGPL, coached by former Pakistan international Khaled Khan and among the better performing teams that won promotion after a special play-off, almost took the lead themselves later in the game only for the KRL post to deny them.

Eventually, the game finished 1-1 with both sides deserving to share the points. Iftikhar remains top scorer so far with four goals to his name.

Tonight, SSGC take on NBP while Army face PAF.

The News (6 October 2018) adds:

KARACHI: Former champions Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) were held by Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) to a 1-1 draw in their third round fixture of the 12th Pakistan Premier Football League at the floodlit Qasim Bagh Stadium in Multan on Thursday night.

Samad Khan hit an equaliser in the 44th minute to secure a crucial one point for SNGPL who qualified for the country’s top-tier league after getting through the qualifiers last month.KRL had taken the lead in the 30th minute through Iftikhar Ali who exquisitely guided the ball through the crowded defence.

KRL Sports Manager Ayaz Butt said his team needed some good finishers. “We have lost our key strikers Kaleemullah, Saadullah, Murtaza Hussain and all-round player Saddam Hussain. They all have joined other teams. We are now struggling to prepare strikers who could win us matches,” Butt told ‘The News’ from Islamabad.

However, Butt was still happy with the progress of his side. “We have five points which we secured through two drawn encounters and a 3-0 win over National Bank of Pakistan (NBP),” Butt said.

KRL will play their next game after nine days. Due to absence of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), the organisers have rescheduled the matches, which gave space to the competing sides between their matches.

The outing between Chaman’s Muslim FC and Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) ended in a goalless draw.Muslim FC, who have the capability to shock even the best of the teams, had more ball possession but squandered a few chances.