A day of double upsets in BPL
League leaders Bashundhara Kings tasted season's first defeat when the defending champions suffered 1-2 to Chattogram Abahani in a contested encounter of Bangladesh Premier League at Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
Nigerian marksman Chinedu Mathew struck in either half to bring down the invincible Kings, who had been unbeaten for 30 matches.
Kings came into the game on the back of nine straight wins, although they struggled in their last two matches against Rahmatganj MFS and Mohammedan, but yesterday they fell to Chattogram Abahani in their league's 18th encounter.
Following kick-off, Abahani's national winger Rakib Hossain had repeatedly threatened Kings with his daunting runs and some powerful shots, but it was Mathew, who broke the deadlock in the 39th minutes with a shot from inside the six-yard box, assisted by Nasirul Islam's pass.
After conceding the lead, Kings pressed harder for the equaliser and managed to earn a penalty in the stoppage time but Argentinian striker Raul Becerra squandered it from the spot.
With both sides pressing each other, Abahani were deprived of doubling the lead with a Mathew shot coming off the crossbar before Kings levelled the margin with Robson finding the net in the 87th minute with a skilful chip inside the box. Mathew restored the lead two minutes later with a solo effort that ended with a brilliant curling shot and that meant Kings' unbeaten run had finally come to an end.
The day's second match also witnessed an upset, with second-placed Dhaka Abahani suffering a humiliating 2-4 defeat against minnow Muktijoddha Sangsad under floodlight.
Ballo Famoussa of Ivory Coast struck a brace while his compatriot Ibrahim Dicko and substitute Sarwar Zaman Nipu netted one goal each to help Muktijoddha raise their points to 14. For Abahani, Sunday Chizoba converted a penalty in the first half and Faisal Ahmed Shitol scored in the extra time of the second-half which only helped reduce the margin of defeat in the end.
Despite the setbacks, Bashundhara Kings and Dhaka Abahani are on top two positions with 49 and 36 points from 18 matches, respectively.