Maharashtra beat Andhra Pradesh 4-1 to keep their unbeaten record intact and inch closer to a pre-quarterfinal berth in the 64th Senior National Football Championship for the Santosh Trophy on Saturday in Kolkata.
Alex Ambrose struck twice (18th and 21st) while Reuben D'Souza (26th) and Jatin Singh Bisht (64th) netted one goal eachfor Maharashtra in a Cluster II match at Howrah Stadium.
Duty Kumar Mahato scored the lone goal for Andhra Pradesh at the stroke of half-time.
In another match of the same cluster, Tripura drew with Chandigarh 1-1 at the Khardah Stadium as both the teams ended their chances of making it to the last-16 stage.
Chandigarh drew first blood through Harvinder Singh in the 23rd minute, while Rajendra Deb Verma brought Tripura back to level terms in the 58th minute.
Maharashtra lead Cluster II with six points with one match left to play.
In Cluster I, Meghalaya drubbed Jharkhand 5-0 riding on a hat-trick by Niwan Gatpoh in their second and final league encounter to keep their hopes of making it to the last-16 alive.
Making a mincemeat of Jharkhand defence, Gatpoh struck in the 31st, 37th and 62nd minutes, while Steven Field (85th) and Malsawma Gawngliana (90+2nd) completed the rout at Barasat Stadium.
A lot will depend on the last cluster I encounter between Karnataka and Jharkhand as the former will just need a point to qualify for the next round, having beaten Meghalaya 1-0.