NEW DELHI Skipper Bhaichung Bhutia scored a goal and was involved in the other on his 100th India appearance to set up a 2-1 win over Kyrgyzstan in the five-nation Nehru Cup tournament on Sunday.
Holders India, needing a win to stay on course for a place in the final, took the lead close to halftime when the seasoned striker trapped a long goalkick and his angular shot bounced in off both posts.
India, who lost 1-0 to Lebanon in the opening game, scored again in the 57th minute when fellow striker Sunil Chhetri converted a penalty after Kyrgyzstan 'keeper Pavel Matiash tripped Bhutia.
Kyrgyzstan squandered a penalty off the next move when forward Ildar Amirov, fouled trying to score, saw his kick punched away by a diving Indian 'keeper Subrata Paul.
Mirlan Murzaev scored in the dying minutes to narrow the margin, but the second defeat dashed Kyrgyzstan's hopes for a place in the final, after the 2-0 defeat to favourites Syria.
Trending On Reuters
At least 17 people have been killed by heavy rains and flooding in Assam, while at least 14 people have died in Bangladesh, with millions of people also displaced, officials said on Saturday. Full Article | Video