Tailevu Naitasiri has advanced to the semifinal of the Extra Supermarket Futsal Inter-District Championship after beating Nadi 4-2 in their final group match at the Vodafone Arena today.
Tailevu Naitasiri front man Merrill Nand combined with Kavinesh Lal to get the dream start against Nadi Futsal just two minutes into the game.
Shaheel Valentine was fouled by Lal seven minutes in with referee Amitesh Behari not hesitating to book him with a yellow card instantly.
Elder brother William Valentine equalised for Nadi, slotting a clean ball from Mohammed Shalmeen into the back of the net with just over 10 minutes left on the clock in the first half.
An arm wrestle proceeded as both teams seemed matched for the occasion.
Talievu Naitasiri regained the lead when a through ball from Nand found Junaid Ali to score past displaced goalkeeper Mohammed Rahman with two minutes left on the clock.
Tailevu Naitasiri held the line to go the watershed in front 2-1.
An early chance for Nadi to equalise came from a penalty to substitute Sanjit Kumar but was easily collected by stopper Mubashir Ali.
The blue machine kept up the fight and turned defence into attack, with a pull away from Nand allowing Prashant Chand to slip an upwards shot into the roof of the goal net for a 3-1 lead with 12 minutes gone.
Nand got his double almost immediately after as the Nadi line panicked now under heavy fire in the second half.
Shalmeen now at keeper joined the Nadi attack, leaving their goal now open with 10 minutes left helping his men to get them back in the game.
Shalmeen also copped a yellow card for a technical foul.
With four minutes left on the clock Nadi threw everything at the Tailevu Naitasiri wall, but it would just not break with Ali pulling of numerous brilliant saves to keep the scoreboard attendees seated.
Mohammed Ayman finally narrowed the deficit with less than two minutes to play but for quiet Nadi bench it looked too little too late.
Nadi– Mohammed Rahman, Shafeem Buksh, Mohammed Shalmeen, Mohammed Arian, Mohammed Ayman Substitutions: Rovil Kumar, Rodrick Chand, Sanjit Kumar, Wayne Bennett, Mohammed Kafoa, Shaheel Valentine, Arav Nadan, Wallace Bali, William Valentine.
Tailevu Naitasiri– Mubashir Ali, Junaid Ali, Kavinesh Lal, Prashant Chand, Merrill Nand Substitutions: Muzammil Hussein, Jone Gukilau, Mohammed Tahir Hussein, Mohammed Shaheer, Ashneel Chand, Kavitesh Pal, Douglas Willietien, Mohammed Khan.