Jayesh Rane and Sagar Khanvilkar scored a hat-trick a piece to help Mumbai FC qualify for the next round of the under-19 I-League at the Air India ground, Kalina, here on Saturday.
Coming into this match, the young Mumbai side was required to beat ONGC by more than three goals and hope for a draw between Pune FC-Air India clash.
The script went exactly the way they wanted. While Mumbai went on to thrash ONGC 6-2, Pune FC and Air India match did end in a draw, thus ensuring Mumbai FC’s progression into the next round.
With ONGC being the more defensive side of the two, it came as a surprise to many when they were the first side to score. A defensive error on Mumbai’s part proved costly as Rabi Bose netted one in for the counter attacking ONGC side in the 12th minute.
Mumbai striker Jayesh Rane was quick to equalise when he single-handedly outwitted four defenders to score in the 17th minute and restore parity. Sagar Khanvilkar then put Mumbai ahead in the 26th minute after finishing off a neat pass from Rohit Mirza.
The match proved to be quite an unruly one from thereon with the referee having to fish out his yellow card a good four times. He even had to award both teams a penalty each in the process — which Rane and Bidyut Haldar were quick to convert for Mumbai and ONGC respectively.
Mumbai FC went on to largely dominate the second half with Khanvilkar finding the net twice and Rane neatly finishing an Aavesh Shaikh cross, both completing individual hat-tricks.
“I am extremely happy with our hat-tricks. They were firsts for both Sagar and I ever since we joined Mumbai FC. I am very pleased with the team’s performance. But we owe it all to Multaza Sir, our coach and mentor. He has improved us to the level we’re at today and he builds our fire to win. We came into this match with the sole aim of winning it with a margin of more than four goals and that’s what we did,” Rane said.