Sports desk, September 27: Jafar Iqbal lived up to his top billing as the mercurial striker scored a brilliant brace for Bangladesh as they recorded a cherished 2-0 win over host Bhutan in their crucial last match of the SAFF U-18 Championship held on Wednesday at Changlimithang Stadium, Thimphu.Winger Jafar Iqbal dazzled the sparse partisan fans and broke their heart as weaved his way to an eye catching runs to slam two late goals to beat the home side.
With this cherished victory Bangladesh are at least ensured the runners-up slot and also keep their finger cross as they too have the chances of being crowned as the champions subject if India beats Nepal or held them to a draw in the last match scheduled to be played 7pm bst this evening.
If India beats Nepal then Bangladesh will be crowned as the champions as per the regulations that say head to head results will be considered to separate the teams if the points remain the same but the match is drawn then Bangladesh will be seen lifting the trophy.
Bangladesh now has nine points from the four matches and if India beats Nepal then India will also finish their campaign with the same nine points. But by the virtue of the 4-3 win against India in the first match Bangladesh will be the champions.
Bangladesh was in a little sluggish in the first half or rather they were in more defensive mood. But after the breather Bangladesh but started to show sign of aggressiveness as they started raiding the rival territory more often from the very beginning of the second half.
Jafar Iqbal hogged the headlines as he was the architect behind Bangladesh win when scripted his own fairy tale evening with a dazzling footwork in the 81sr minute with a superb solo goal. Dashing across the right flank and Jafar displayed his class as he dribbled past host of Bhutanese defenders to place the ball to the far corner of the post.
Three minutes later Jafar sealed the fate of the match with another solo dash this time he rounded off the Bhutanese goalie to the dismay of the home crowd (2-0).