East Bengal’s final-gameweek fixture of Calcutta Football League (CFL) Premier Division A against Calcutta Customs at their home ground was washed off on Sunday, keeping Peerless SC away from celebrating their champagne moment.
The weekend was scheduled to see three teams go at the crown, namely Peerless SC, East Bengal, and holders Mohun Bagan. Peerless SC lead the table before East Bengal’s washout with 23 points from 11 matches, after beating George Telegraph 2-0 at Barasat. That result meant Mohun Bagan’s slim chances of defending their crown were over despite their 3-0 over Kalighat MS 3-0 on Sunday.
As for the East Bengal ground, the match commissioner Bikash Mukherjee did his final inspection of the ground along with other officials at 3:45 pm, and decided to call off the match which was supposed to start at 2:30 pm. The ground was water-logged because of the high tide in the adjoining Bhagirathi river.
Although the galleries were almost-packed, the ground was submerged in knee-deep water, especially in a corner close to the Mohammedan Sporting Club.
As it stands, for East Bengal to ruin Peerless’ party, Alejandro Menendez’s side need to beat Calcutta Customs by at least a seven-goal margin, as Peerless have a goal difference of +13, while East Bengal has +7.
With torrential rain affecting Kolkata and Maidan activities going into a fortnight-long ‘hibernation’ from Tuesday because of the Army rule, organisers IFA are trying to reschedule the match at Kalyani Stadium on Wednesday, according to The Times of India.
If the match is not rescheduled and the points are shared between East Bengal and Calcutta Customs, or if the prestigious red and yellow fail to win by the vital goal margin, Peerless will lift their first CFL title in their 61 years of existence.
A Peerless triumph would also end the East Bengal-Mohun Bagan dominance on the competition. Mohammedan Sporting was the last club to win the CFL apart from the two footballing giants back in 1981.