By: Yusuf Rahmon
The ongoing CBN Cup has been an exhilarating journey so far and not devoid of surprises. With the conclusion of the group stage, the second round, which is the semi-finals has been reached. Out of the initial 16 participating teams, eight have successfully progressed to the quarter-finals.
The final matches of the group stage decided the fate of many teams as some favourites were stunned by underdogs while others maintained their perfect form.
The unexpected turn of events began in group A where the Industrial Production Engineering team, having secured only one point from their initial two matches, staged a remarkable comeback to claim a spot in the quarter-finals after defeating group leaders MBBS 2 nil. Physiology also pulled a similar stunt as they put 3 past the Physics goalie to record their first win of the competition and seal a place in the quarter-final. This proved just how unpredictable the game of football is, as both Physiology and IPE were ranked 3rd and 4th respectively after the first two matches.
Matchday 5 was rather a comical one and a day to remember for the Computer Science team. The red-hot Chemistry team maintained their perfect start as they defeated Computer Science 4-1. However, the Computer Science team should have qualified with a solid four points and 1 goal difference before the match but the unexpected happened during the second match of the day. The defending champions, Veterinary Medicine, decided not to show up for their match against Architecture and gifted the latter a walkover and a 3-nil victory. This unremarkable event was enough to see Architecture through to the quarter-finals, while the Computer Science team were shown the exit door.
The Pharmacy team was quite unlucky to have been drawn among three Tech teams and could not survive the pressure. A narrow defeat against WPE handed Pharmacy their second loss of the group stage and an opportunity for Agricultural Engr. to displace them as runner-up. The Agricultural Engr team wasted no time to capitalize on this and put 3 past their fellow techites, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, in a controversial encounter.
Group D was yet another group with a surprising ending. Geology looked well-positioned as the group leader after claiming all six points from their opening two matches but did not make it to the quarter-finals after losing 2 nil to the Petroleum Engineering team. The fate of the progressing teams was decided by goal difference, with Petroleum Engineering ending the group stage as the group leader after losing their first match while Mathematics claimed the second spot, thanks to a 3-nil victory over Biochemistry.
What To Expect In The Quater Finals?
Considering the group stage display, the quarter-finals will be thrilling although the fixtures are yet to be confirmed. Nonetheless, everyone will be looking forward to seeing if the Chemistry team can maintain their amazing form and claim the title since no team come close in terms of gameplay and goalscoring prowess. However, the Techites remain a threat and have the numbers. So, it should not be surprising to see if at least two Tech teams advance to the semi-finals.