A last-gasp strike by substitute Zahed Parvez Chowdhury helped Lt. Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club Limited snatch a 1-1 draw against reigning champion Dhaka Abahani Limited in a thrilling Bangladesh Premier League encounter at Bangabandhu National Stadium Monday.
Having been denied from scoring in the opening half, despite a number of notable attempts, Nabib Newaj Jibon gave the Dhanmondi giant the deserved lead early in the second half before veteran midfielder Zahed came off the bench to seal the equaliser in injury time.
Both the sides remained jointly at second place in the points table and reduced the gap to five points with leader Chittagong Abahani Limited, who were held to a draw by newcomer Saif Sporting Club on Sunday. Abahani and Sheikh Jamal now have 21 points from 10 matches.
The game kicked off after a minute’s silence was observed following the passing away of Abahani legend Amalesh Sen, who breathed his last on Saturday evening.
The Sky Blues began the match brightly, dominated midfield, created chances and barely allowed the opponent to penetrate their defence, led admirably by veteran Ghanaian Samad Yussif.
Jibon saw his close-range header in the 19th minute fisted away brilliantly by Sheikh Jamal goalkeeper Mitul Hossain after Rubel Mia's precise cross from the right flank met the young striker just outside the six-yard box.
Jibon had another chance in the 38th minute following a brilliant build-up. Playing one-to-one with Emon Mahmud, the unmarked Jibon received a lovely through pass from the former, despite the presence of a couple of defenders but the latter failed to make the best use of the build-up with an average shot straight to the keeper.
At the stroke of the first half, Rubel tried his luck with a long-range looping effort from the right side and it went agonisingly close to hitting the woodwork after a slight touch from Mitul.
Jibon finally put the Sky Blues ahead 12 minutes into the second half, heading home from a yard away, following a superb cross by Waly Faisal from the left flank.
Sheikh Jamal had a glorious chance to equalise in the 85th minute but young defender Tutul Hossain Badshah made a spectacular goal-line clearance to deny Nigerian forward Raphael Odoyin's shot from the right side of the box that deflected off Abahani custodian Shahidul Alam Sohel.
Zahed, who replaced veteran footballer Enamul Haque in the 66th minute, stunned the Abahani supporters when he brought parity four minutes into the five-minute added time. Zahed's grounder from the top of the box hit the back of the net following a cross from Gambian winger Solomon King Kanform.
Sk Jamal 1
(Zahed 90+4) 1 Abahani