Churchill Brothers staved off the I-League relegation when they edged past Salgaocar 2-1 in a nail biting final round encounter at the Tilak Maidan here on Monday.
The match time was extended by 11 minutes after lights went off but Churchill survived the few anxious moments in the end.
Churchill Brothers who needed a win to survive relegation started well and took the lead from a self goal after rival defender Augustin Fernandes shot into its own goal in the 6th minute.
Following a penalty, Anthony Wolfe who took the kick saw his shot saved by rival keeper Karanjit Singh and the rebound was put into its own net by Augustin Fernandes.
Salgaocar than regrouped from the set back and came with couple of forays and found the equalizer in the 20th minute through Darryl Duffy who tapped the ball into the net off a Dudu Omagbemi cross to have both the teams locked at 1-1 during interval.
The second half was fought on even keel with both the teams coming close to scoring on few occasions. The winner came in the 65th minute when Balwant Singh tapped the ball into the net conecting to a cross from Lenny Rodrigues who received an assist from Anthony Wolfe.
Balwant finished joint highest scorer in the league with 14 goals along with Sunil Chhetri.
Thereafter play was halted in the 80th minute when the stadium was put into darkness when light went off and it took 11 minutes for play to resume with Churchill survived Salgaocar threat and ended on a winning note and thus survived relegation.
The win took Churchill Brothers tally to 25 points, one point above Mohammedan Sporting who finished last with 24 points to get themselves relegated into the second Division of the I-League next season.