KOLKATA: There was a party atmosphere at Mohun Bagan ground as Mohun Bagan clinched their first Calcutta Premier Division ‘A’ in nine years after beating Calcutta Customs 2-0 in their penultimate league fixture on Wednesday.
The Mariners only needed a draw to secure the silverware but Henry Kisekka’s (4′ & 45′) first-half brace ensured the Mariners clinch their 30th league title in style in front of their boisterous fans.
Mohun Bagan are worthy champions for the class of their line-up and the firm, educated hand of their coach Sankarlal Chakraborty and the excellence of their structures. And spectacular for the special atmosphere at Mohun Bagan ground for anyone who was there.
Mohun Bagan started the game aggressively and it did not take long for the Mariners to get the breakthrough.
Henry showed his strength and class as he bull-dozed his way to score Mohun Bagan’s opener from Arjit Bagui’s right sided cross in the 4th minute.
The Marines did not rest after the goal though. There were chances that kept coming over the next ten minutes as everyone including Pintu Mahata, Aser Dipanda Dicka, Shilton D’Silva and Henry kept combining to test the Customs defense.
Meanwhile, Customs launched a few attacks of their own. Stanley Iffeyani was nearly clean through on goal, but was foiled by a brilliant interception by Mohun Bagan custodian Sankar Roy.
Mohun Bagan, on the other hand, continued to dominate the proceedings but had to wait till the 45th minute to get their second. Dipanda cut back to Henry inside the box and the Ugandan striker slotted in at the far post to give Mohun Bagan a two goal cushion going into the breather.
Bagan remained in control after the break and Henry was not far away from catching Customs goalkeeper Suvam Sen off his line in the 48th minute with a typically audacious shot from outside the box.
On the other hand, Customs struggled to get back into the game as the half continued, with little to no impact from all areas of the field.
Suvam was called into action again just after the hour mark when he kept out Azharuddin Mallick at the near post.
At the other end of the park, Sankar had a quieter evening than usual, in being well protected by a defense in which centre-back Eze Kingsley was a tower of strength.
With their fans in full voice, sensing the league title is on the way, Mohun Bagan saw out the final few minutes in style as they played keep-ball in the final moments of the game.
The victory took Mohun Bagan to 26 points from 10 games and into an unassailable position, with just their final fixture against Mohammedan Sporting Club on September 18 still to be played.
“I don’t have words to describe my emotions. All credit goes to the players. This is a great day for our fans as they have waited far too long for this title.” Sankarlal said.