Round about 8 in the morning the team gathered at the D2 canteen and after short pep talk by the manager and a couple of boiled eggs, headed towards the stadium.
Incidentally everyone was playing their first game in the national stadium and hence nerves seemed to have caught them a little. Afterall this was probably the one of the major tournaments D2 was participating, DHL Six-a-side corporate soccer where 24 major corporate houses of the country were taking part.
After about hrs wait, the team had its first match against the NCC bank which kicked off at 11.00 am. The nervousness was quite evident as the the game was not being played in the same manner as team D2 would do in their practice sessions and to add to the pressure, NCC had whole bunch of supporters where as D2 had virtually none.Only few selected enthusiasts upendra, Bhanu, sudeep, shamesh , Sourav and others had managed to made it to stadium. Somewhere in the middle of the first half, a superbly ( and qucikly ) taken free kick by Sajan had the opponent team caught off guard and the score was 1-0. The confidene slowly began to creep into D2’s game. However this was very short lived. Ball struck from distance this time caught Nabin offguard, who had a superb game, and the scores were tied again. As the game was 12 mins a half, the half time was already there.
The second half was very hard to deal with as the scorching heat had begun to take its toll on the players.The attack from the opponent grew stronger but then the team d2 was in no mood to let go. They fought back and fought back strong. 6 mins to the whistle, Biswa’s pass to Sajan who redirected the ball to Hitesh and he in turn passed it to Asim who made no mistake to send the ball back of the net and once again D2 was back on the driving seat.
With no exaggeration, this probably was one of the goals of the day, Asim, the striker, has arrived. It was pretty arduos task to see off last 5 mins , even though it was just 5 mins per se. Sajan was replaced by Bijaya to add more defensive strength and with excellent defending from Biswa, Bijaya and Prashant, D2 managed to hold on and tasted the sweet taste of victory in a major tournament. Game won D2, 2-1.
The next game for D2 was 2 hrs later, against Alpine Card Service.
D2 knew that they would come back with much heat as they had lost their first game.On the other side D2 looked more composed and relaxed. May be many of the teams had not adjusted the ‘six a side’ version of football, but D2 for sure were quick learners. And it did not take long to get their noses in front. A perfectly judged pass by biswa from one side of the goal to hitesh which he took in a perfect manner and blasted it past the keeper saw the ball strike back of the net. D2 lead , 1-0. However D2 was in no mood to relax. They kept on hounding the opponent’s goal and had it not been for some excellent saves from Alpine keeper, D2 would have hit a couple more. Ashim could not complete the second game due to a Knee injury, but Rajan provided a great replacement with a holding role to keep the lead intact.
Cheered up by some of d2 colleagues, Smriti and Shreeya leading the pack, who would shout ‘pass to d2!! pass to d2!!’ every time opponent had the ball in possession, the players knew that they would win the game pretty comfortably which they eventually did. Final score, D2 1-0.
The remaining games are scheduled to take place on July, Friday the 13th.
Standings after first leg
Team Played Points
Speedway cargo 3 9
D2 Hawkeye services 2 6
World Distribution 2 3
Standard Chartered Bank 2 1
Alpine Card Service 3 1
NCC Bank 2 0
Team D2 would like to extend its heartfelt thanks to all the fellow D2Hawks who managed to take their time off to cheer their team.
Calculating the chances
Not off the record, yet
That’s Plan B
Navin gets a feel
All spread out
and the Hawk is watching you
Nervous moments before the Stadium Debut
its official, you got the know the rules
Eager to get in
NCC starts the game
On the run
oh! that’s in. The first goal from Sajan
NCC puts it over
long one for Ashim
Bishwa good enough for 2
The Dasarath grass
Its a long way to the top
Bijaya and Prashanta, Lunch time
Match 2 starts
Prashanta too tall for the Post
Ashim gets a blow, makes the move out
Alpine gave us some nervy moments
Half time break
D2 supporters fuel in the players
Still got a half to hold on
The ball was mostly in Alpine DBox
Sajan takes a corner
Biswa and Sajan hold the defence in game 2
Down to earth
Alpine goalie watches the incoming ball
The score says it all
A day’s worth
the stadium stands still
all cool and relaxed