Chittagong Abahani Limited extended their winning spree to four matches to stay at the top of the Bangladesh Premier League points table as the new powerhouse defeated Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra comfortably 3-1 at Bangabandhu National Stadium on Saturday.
Nigerian striker Afeez Olawale Oladipo scored a brace, netting in the either side of each half, before in-form forward Towhidul Alam Sabuj bagged his fourth goal in as many matches to seal victory, which maintained the port city club’s 100% winning record in the league this season.
Olawale was the star of the day but it was Sabuj whose name was uttered more than his foreign teammate for his unique achievement.
The national forward found the back of the net in all four matches so far, which is a rare feature in the history of the premier league.
No player have ever scored in four consecutive matches at the beginning of the professional league.
Sheikh Russel forward Touati Youness scored in three straight matches in the inaugural 2006-07 Bangladesh League season.
Former national star Alfaz Ahmed also did the same for Sheikh Russel the following season.
Kester Akon and Emeka Darlington also netted in the first three matches in the 2011-12 and 2013-14 season respectively.
Sabuj’s goal came in the 81st minute and it decided the fate of the game.
A defence-splitting through pass from winger Zahid Hossain set the national forward in a one-on-one situation with Ashraful Islam Rana.
Sabuj skipped past the onrushing Sheikh Russel goalkeeper Ziaur Rahman with a clever chip before placing the ball into an empty net.
Earlier, the Chittagong outfit began the game brightly and went ahead with only 12 minutes into the clock when Olawale headed home a precise Zahid corner.
Sheikh Russel went close to equalising in the 25th minute but Gambian striker Dawda Ceesay saw his free-kick from five yards away curve toward the top-left corner and miss the target by a whisker.
Nigerian defender Udoka Alison scored an own goal seven minutes into the second half, which made the scoreline all square.
Following a long cross by Shahedul Alam Shahed, Udoka’s low header toward the Sheikh Russel keeper was intended for a pass but Rana failed to catch the ball as it rolled into his own net.
Olawale put Chittagong Abahani ahead again in the 73rd minute.
Left-back Mansur Amin delivered a cross to the unmarked Olawale in the middle of the box and the Nigerian striker calmly headed home past the Sheikh Russel custodian.
Chittagong Abahani now have 12 points from four matches to remain at the top of the points table.
They are three points ahead of Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club Limited, who will face Rahmatganj Muslim Friends Society at the same venue on Sunday.
Sheikh Russel remained seventh with four points from four matches.
Chittagong Abahani 3
(Olawale 12, 73, Sabuj 81) 1 Sheikh Russel
(Alison – 52 OG)
Rahmatganj v Sheikh Jamal, BNS, 5:30pm