Pune: The Hero ISL defending Champions, Hyderabad FC kicked off their 2022-23 campaign with an entertaining, 3-3 stalemate against Mumbai City here in Pune on Sunday.
Joao Victor (45 +2’; 76’) and Halicharan Narzary found the back of the net for Manolo Marquez’s side while goals from Greg Stewart (67’) and Alberto Noguera (85’) along with a Chinglensana Konsham own goal (23’) helped Mumbai draw level late in the game.
Sana’s own goal came after a dry spell of 20 opening minutes where either side failed to create a decent chance. But Bipin Singh’s ball was too good for Sana, who was unlucky to put it into his own net.
Joao Victor drew level with a calm spot-kick that was awarded for a foul on Bartholomew Ogbeche, in what was the last action of the first half.
The teams came out for the second half on level terms, but it was Hyderabad who were on the front foot, constantly testing the Mumbai City backline, who got away with a few questionable fouls.
And it was Narzary finishing off a beautiful through ball from Mohammad Yasir, that took Hyderabad back in the lead. Narzary’s goal was soon cancelled out by Greg Stewart, who scored after a scrap in the midfield.
The referee decided not to stop play and Mumbai City made the most, with Stewart sliding it past Laxmikant Kattimani, and the Islanders were back level again.
Joao Victor popped up from a corner and made it 3-2 with less than 15 minutes to play, but a late Alberto Noguera tap-in meant that both teams had to settle for a point each in what was an entertaining blockbuster in the Indian Super League.
Kattimani put in a superb performance, making a few crucial saves but Mumbai City made the most of HFC’s lapses at the back and never looked like going away.
Joao Victor was the Hero of the Match for his brace.
Hyderabad FC are back in action when they take on NorthEast United at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati on Thursday, October 13.