Bangladesh clings to the Asian Hockey Federation cup

Kazi Md Mukitul Islam

Bangladesh retained the Asian Hockey Federation title by beating Oman 6-3 in the final of the tournament on 24th April in Queen Sirikit Stadium in Singapore. Krishna Kumar of Bangladesh hit three goals, penalty corner specialist Mamunur Rahman Chayan scored two and Iqbal Nadir Prince netted one. The 4th Season of Asian Hockey Federation cup took place at Bangkok in Thailand last April.
The Asian Hockey Federation introduced the AHF Cup (Qualifying tournament for Asia Cup) from 1997 and Bangladesh had taken part in it from the third edition in 2008. They defeated Oman 7-1 in the final of the competition in that edition in Dhaka. Yet, remained unbeaten in the competition and won all the matches by big margins. Bangladesh made to final beating Sri Lanka by 5-3 in the second semifinal. Both of the finalists have confirmed their place in the 9th Men’s Asia Cup tournament 2013 in Singapore.
In FIFA Men’s Football our rank is now 152nd .Where In Men’s Hokey, Bangladesh holds 40th position currently. However, due to lack of publicity of this sport, the glorious triumph of our heroes hardly brought up in the media. One of the reasons might be that since the beginning, hockey has been considered as sports of the privileged. Due to lack of sufficient ground for playing this sports, popularity of hockey never stir up.  Moreover, media focus on those issues that have public demand. Unfortunately, we know what Sakib Al Hasan is doing in Kolkata, but many of us don’t even know what our National hockey team has achieved in Bangkok recently.
Season of Football Champions
In May 2012, most of the world’s famous club football leagues finished their round year season competition. Some clubs out performed like Manchester City in Premier League, some failed to satisfy their fans, like A.C Milan in Serie A and some were defeated by fate like, Barcelona in La Liga. Above all, Chelsea proved itself as the real champion winning two most prestigious trophy one after the other last month. This season fetched a huge craze and enthusiasm for football lovers and gifted some of the best moments of football history. Results of several of late finished tournaments are given below:

UEFA Europa League
The 2012 UEFA Europa League Final was match was played on 9 May 2012 at the Arena National in Bucharest, Romania. It was the 41st season of Europe’s secondary club football tournament organized by UEFA . The final match was contested between two Spanish sides– Atlético Madrid and Athletic Bilbao. The match ended with Atlético Madrid winning 3–0, with Radamel Falcao scoring two goals and Diego scoring another. The winners earned the right to play against the winners of the 2011–12 UEFA Champions League in the 2012 UEFA Super Cup.
La Liga
One of the most viewed tournament of the world. It enjoins world’s two most famous and rich players, Lionel Messi and Christiano Ronaldo. The 2011–12 La Liga season is the 81st since its establishment. Real Madrid won the league, a record 32nd time in La Liga history, after beating Athletic Bilbao on 2 May 2012 and finished the season with a number of records including 100 points in a single season, a record 121 goals scored & goal difference of +89, and a record 16 away wins and 32 overall wins. Rival and defending champion Barcelona ended as runners up with 91 points. But Lionel Messi scored 50 goals and Christiano Ronaldo netted 46. Barcelona won the fair play award too.

English Premier League
Since the inception of the Premier League in 1992, five have won the title: Manchester United (12 titles), Arsenal (3), Chelsea (3), Blackburn Rovers (1). But this year Manchester City won the title. It was their first league title since 1968, beating Queens Park Rangers 3–2 on the final day of the season with a last-minute goal from Sergio Agüero. This season, Manchester City rivaled against neighbor Manchester City till the end. Both the teams finished with same number of points (89). But Manchester City clinched the victory with its 4 goals advantage over Man U. This year Manchester City brought a breakthrough in 20 year history of this Premier League.

FA cup
The current holder of the FA Cup is Chelsea, who defeated Liverpool 2–1 in the 2012 final for their fourth triumph in six years and seventh overall.  This year it was the 131st season of FA cup, the Football Association Challenge Cup. It is a knockout cup competition in English football and is the oldest association competition in the world.  Chelsea was well organized by beating Barcelona recently to reach the Champions League final this year and exercised a degree of control at Wembley against Liverpool on 5th May.

UEFA Champions League
Drogba phobia! In last few matches, it has been the Ivory Coast’s superstar proving himself a villain for the opponent in changing the match result at the last minute. It happened in the semi final against Barcelona, FA cup final against Liverpool and last with Bayern Munich in Champions league. UEFA champion’s league is the World’s most prestigious football club competition. The reigning champion of the competition is English club Chelsea, after beating Bayern Munich 4-3 on penalties, following a 1-1 draw after extra time. Didier Drogba was the hero as Chelsea shattered Bayern Munich’s Champions League dream at the Allianz Arena on May 19. The loss left Bayern shattered as their dream of lifting their fifth European title. For much of the match a Bayern victory had looked the likeliest outcome. Nevertheless, when it went to penalties, Chelsea’s goalkeeper Petr Cech proved his caliber after Drogba scored the equalizer in the extra minute of the match. 2011-12 season truly belonged The Blues after winning FA cup and this back to back. It was first time they won Champions league trophy. Real Madrid is the most successful in this competition’s history with nine titles by its name.

‘Sera Bangali’ Shakib
Bangladeshi Cricket Master Shakib Al Hasan on 11 May awarded as Sera Bangali in a program organized by STAR Ananda. Habibul Bashar was the only person before him who achieved this award back in 2007. Along with Sakib, Indian young batsman Manoj Tiwari received this award for their excellence in the game of cricket. The celebration was held at Science city auditorium, Kolkata of India. The awards are presented in a plethora of categories like art, film, music, education, business, science, sports and lifetime achievement.
72 for Messi
72 goals, a big jump from 68 to this number in his last match, Lionel Messi Installed an excellent example in this season. He made a record of passing over 70 goals in one season. In match against Espeniola, Barcelona won by 4-0. Messi scored all the goals from his team. In addition, made the parting of their coach Guardiola memorable one. Guardiola got the best gift from his favorite disciple.
However, Messi already shaped history in the previous match against Malaga with his scintillating Hat trick. He broke the record of Gerd Muller, German legend of 60s and 70s. Muller scored 67 goals in season 1972-73 for Bayern Munich. This year Messi scored 50 goals in La liga.  With his four goals against Espaniola, Messi amplified the goal difference with Christiano Ronaldo who has scored 46 goals this season. However, penalty miss by Messi was one of the major reasons of departure of Barcelona from UEFA champions’ league this year. But, scoring 4 goals in penalties in last two matches, the three-time FIFA best player put a padlock to his critics.

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