Maharashtra entered the semifinals of the 67th Santosh Trophy national football tournament, beating Tamil Nadu 2-1 in a group B quarterfinal league match in Kollam on Tuesday.
They qualified for the semis by securing nine points after winning all the three matches in the quarterfinal league. Maharashtra had beaten Jharkhand 4-1 and Goa 3-0 in their earlier matches.
Both the goals were scored by M P Pradeep, a player from Kerala. After the first half went goalless, Pradeep scored for the winners in the 75th minute. Tamil Nadu replied in the 85th minute through A Raegan. Just three minutes later Pradeep scored again, which sealed the match in their favour.
Tamil Nadu's Nirmal Kumar was shown a red card for rough play in the 20th minute of the game after which the team played with only ten players.
In the second quarterfinal, which was an inconsequential one, as both teams had been knocked out of the tournament, Jharkhand and Goa played out a 2-2 draw.
Goa's Agnel Colaco scored first in the 68th minute, and Jharkhand's reply came just three minutes later, through Ramesh Kujur. Joe Rodrigues scored for Goa in the 81st minute. Jharkhand's equaliser came in the injury time, in the 91st minute to be precise, through Bosen Murmu.
A red card was shown in this game too, with Goa's Nirmal Kumar being sent out in the 60th minute.