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Dhaka Tribune

Sheikh Russell in touching distance of treble

Update : 30 Apr 2013, 04:52 PM

Sheikh Russell coach Maruful Haque believes his team has what it takes to beat Sheikh Jamal to secure their maiden title Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League title in the virtual title decider at the Bangabandhu National Stadium at 5:00pm today. Sheikh Russell needs just one point to complete their fairytale season run, in which they have already notched two titles-the Federation Cup and the Independence Cup. Sitting on the top of the table with 32 points, one more point would put them beyond any other team’s reach. Second placed Abahani has 29 points, with one match to play while Jamal who has 28 points, will complete their campaign against Brothers Union in the last round. If Russell lose today’s encounter, they can still win the title in their final game against Soccer Club Feni. Jamal needs to win both its games and hope that Russell loses both of theirs to have any chance of claiming the title. In case of a tie at the top of the table, the league will be decided in a play-off. Refusing to be complacent, Russell coach Maruful Haque has urged his players to pour all their energy in today’s game. “It is simple, we have waited for this occasion from the very beginning of the season, the golden moment has arrived and we don’t want to lose the opportunity. We are ready to face the challenge and prove our worth.  “No pressure, no extra efforts, just go simple and easy, don’t lose your concentration, that’s all I have asked my players to do. Jamal is a good team and they will be a charged one as they have lost their last match. We have to be at our best,” said Maruf. Maruf also wanted to remain focused upon the present not the past. “A new day and a new dawn - we have forgotten what we have won in the past, what we want is a win now. We will not wait for the next match,” said the coach, whose players are free from injury and card troubles. His Nigerian counterpart, Josef Afusi, by contrast is struggling to form his best eleven due to injuries. First choice custodian Mostak, Nigerian hit-man Mike Otojareri, midfielder Enamul Haque Sharif, winger Shakil and forward Sunday Chizoba all are nursing injuries. Afusi was philosophical and reasonably positive nonetheless. “I have to go ahead with what I have, the teamwork is the key.”

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