Al Jokar pull rabbit out of hat for title

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Al Jokar pull rabbit out of hat for title
The Al Jokar team and its fans celebrate the futsal title on Saturday morning.

Dubai - Perennial runners-up claim futsal honours in third attempt

By Moni Mathews

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Published: Sun 12 Jul 2015, 4:14 PM

Perennial runners-up Al Jokar deservedly etched their name on the trophy when they came back from a goal down to beat fancied Fohood Jumeirah 4-2 in the final of the futsal event of the third NAS Ramadan Sports Tournament at the NAS Sports Complex, early Saturday morning.
Surprise won the bronze medal playoff earlier in the night after a 8-5 victory over XCAT in the blue riband championship of the multi-event Ramadan tourney in six disciplines.
Following their back-to-back losses in the title rounds in 2013 and 2014, Al Jokar, after conceding a goal (0-1) with 18 minutes to go in the first half, stormed back in the late stages of the second half to walk away with the glittering cup and prize money. The halftime score was 1-1.
Yousuf Fikree, assistant coach of Al Jokar, speaking after the final said: "This win has taken three years of hard work. But it has been worth the wait."
Brazilian striker Robson Edelson Dos Santos restored parity for Al Jokar with 11 minutes to go after Franklin Douglas Cavalante brought parity from a cleverly taken run-in freekick.
Al Jokar and Fohood Jumeirah played with a cautious approach trying to create openings with superb trapping and passing skills. It was Santos again who came on to the scoreboard (2-1) with a fast move and a first time shot with 9:18 minutes to go in the second half following a Fernando Cosme Nascimento corner.
The Brazilian show was near complete as Carlos Vagner Filho rocketed in from close range (3-1) to practically seal the issue with three minutes left. Nascimento lobbed from midcourt with Fohood goalie Omar Abdulsattar completely out of the semi circle (4-1) in the dying minutes before Bader Ibrahim Saeed of Fohood reduced the margin.
The final was watched by the patron of the NAS Ramadan Sports Tournament, Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council (DSC); Shaikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Mattar Al Tayer, vice chairman, Dubai Sports Council; Ahmed Al Manana, chairman of the Higher Organising Committee NAS Ramadan Sports Tournament; tournament director Hassan Al Mazrouei and top DSC officials.

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