Shillong(Meghalaya), July 23: The latest of goals by Wadajied Ryngkhlem earned Shillong Lajong FC a 1-0 win over Malki SC in the 25th match of the OC Blue Shillong Premier League 2021-22 at Third Ground, Polo, here today.
Ryngkhlem scored in the sixth minute of second half stoppage time in a game that was otherwise heading for a draw.
Before today, Lajong were sixth and Malki seventh. Both teams had 4 points, with Lajong leading on goal difference (-6 to -11). There is no movement even after this result, though SLFC are now just 1 point behind fifth-placed Nangkiew Irat (8 points), who have a game in hand.
Deep in stoppage time, the ball was bobbing around in the box and Malki’s Khrawkupar Tamu tried to hoick it clear but it went straight to Ryngkhlem on the edge of the box. He took one touch to control the ball and shot it low along the ground with the second. Malki goalkeeper Rihoklang Khongjoh, who had a good outing prior to this point, got a hand to the ball but could not keep it out.
The first half saw Tremiki Lamurong of Lajong hit a free-kick straight to Khongjoh and Malki then immediately counter, though Lucas Syngkli ended up blazing the ball over the crossbar. Syngkli had played all the previous matches of the season as centre back but was, for this game, moved up into an attacking position.
In the second half, the intensity of the game was lifted after 55 minutes, with action at either end of the pitch.
Lajong started looking more intent on scoring but were still a little haphazard coming forwards. Malki also had their moments but could not find a shot on target.
Although they were trailing SLFC in the standings, Malki appeared more willing to accept a draw towards the end, perhaps hoping to regroup and come out stronger when the second leg of the OC Blue SPL begins in the first week of August.
That was not to be, however, as Ryngkhlem put the ball into the back of the net and they were consigned to their fourth consecutive defeat. Lajong, meanwhile, now have two wins under their belts but are still nowhere near the level of the clubs in the top half of the table.
On Monday, leaders Mawlai SC will go up against third-placed Rangdajied United FC at 4pm.