Shillong: Shillong Lajong FC on Saturday edged past Sikkim United FC 2-1 at round 19 of I-League, widening the gap to seven points ahead of the latter.
Lajong outwitted their opponent from the first whistle as Sushil Kumar Singh's ball hit the cross bar to send a chill down their rival's spine.
While it took sometimes for the visitors to match their opponent's attack, none of the team could score in the first half.
In the second half of the match, Sikkim United changed their game tactics and dominated the first 20 minutes of the game.
It was Linekar Machado though who opened the account in the 20th minute which silenced the 5000 odd spectators.
The conceding of a goal forced Lajong's Thangboi Singto to replace Jibon Singh with P C Lalhimthara who eventually equalised the score in the 33 minute of the second half.
From then on, Lajong did not look back as they dominate the remaining proceeding of the match.
Japanese striker T Matsuke netted the winning goal in the 45 minute of the match, much to the roaring of the home crowd and disappointment of the visitors.
"I was disappointed with the refereeing. I am angry. We were killed by stupid decision of the referee," an agitated Australian coach Nathan Hall of the United Sikkim told reporters at the post match conference.
He said he did not deserve the result while believing that his 11 players worked really hard for at least a point.
With this win, Lajong improved their standing in the table to hold 10th position and steered seven points ahead of their rival.
Matsugae was awarded man of the match for displaying high level of commitment to the game and for contributing to the winning team.