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Super Cup cheers for Suwaiq
September 01, 2013 , 11 : 32 am GST
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Over the moon: Jubilant Suwaiq players celebrating their Super Cup win after beating Fanja 2-1 at the Seeb Sports Stadium yesterday. Photo – Times of Oman / JUN ESTRADA
Suwaiq, battling like true champions, scored two second half goals to register a sensational come-from-behind victory over Fanja and clinch the Super Cup on the inaugural day of the Oman soccer's professional era at the Seeb Stadium yesterday.
The 2-1 verdict not only helped Suwaiq win the title for the first time after having finished runners-up thrice in the past, but also complete a rare treble adding their third Super Cup to the league crown and His Majesty's Cup pennant.
In the first match of the pro era, Fanja gave themselves a chance of settling scores with opponents who pipped them for the premier the league title last season with a first half goal scored by Mohammed Al Maashari.
But their dream of starting the season were shattered in the second session, which provided some thrills leading to two goals for the eventual champions scored by Abduladim Saleh and Abdullah Thuwaini.
In post-match comments, Suwaiq's assistant coach Jassim Majid acknowledged that all hard work is paying off even though they were not at full strength with some of the players being with the Army team.
"The team has been preparing well for this match. Their hard work paid off though we are missing some players who are with the army team," he said.
"Now our preparations will continue for the new league season."
Speaking about team's comeback in the match, he said: "Our midfield did not operate such planned in the first session. So we had to make some changes in the second half and that helped us to dominate the latter part of the match. And we are glad our plan worked and we won the match."
To start with it was Fanja who had the better of the exchanges with mercurial Raeed Ibrahim Al Haikal and Mohammed Al Maashari combining well with speedy right winger Saad Suhail to launch a series of attack from the right.
After a series of threatening moves, Fanja tested Suwaiq's custodian Fayeez Al Rusheidi when a similar attack from the right saw Mahmoud Al Hasani launch a long ranger which narrowly missed the target.
But it was two minutes later Fanja posed the real danger when Saad Suhail, taking a corner shot the ball over the rising defenders and Abdullah Al Qasabi did well to the head the ball diagonally down towards the goal. But to the disappointment of their travelling fans, the ball once again missed the target narrowly.
At the other end, Suwaiq were relying more on the counter attacks with strike duo of Ali Mohammed Al Rajabi and Abdullah Al Shuhi playing the waiting game.
Suwaiq too managed a couple of attempts at the Fanja goal but their best effort came in the 23rd minute when Adil Jaffal run down the left to send in a nice pass to Ali Mohammed Al Rajabi. But the latter despite having the rival custodian Ahmed Al Hatali at his mercy shot the ball wide.
As the match progressed Fanja raised the tempo of the game with former international and captain Badr Al Maimani marshaling his troops with aplomb. Just after half hour, he was in the thick of action when he fed the ball to unmarked Saad Suhail who did well to put the ball behind Fayeez Rushaidi only for the linesman to raise the flag.
Though Fayeez was not so lucky in the 42 minute when Raed Ibrahim moving from the right hoodwinked a defender before relying the ball to the unmarked Mohammed Al Maashari inside the box. The latter had all the time to stop the ball and shot it past Fayeez.
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