19th-20th September 2020 Tajikistan Higher League Gameweek 15
Khatlon 1-1 Istiklol
(Soirov 45+3; Saidov 47pen)
Istiklol secured their ninth Tajikistan Higher League title with three matches remaining, despite being held to a draw at Khatlon. From a short corner, A. Dzhalilov cued up Soirov to curl in, catching the keeper off guard at his near post seconds before the half-time whistle. The hosts equalised shortly after the restart, as Saidov dispatched from the penalty spot to share the spoils.
Istaravshan 4-0 Regar-TadAZ
(Barotov 22 65 71, Kurbanov 87)
Barotov bagged a hat-trick as Istaravshan thrashed Regar-AZ to bounce back from consecutive defeats. The No10 dinked over the onrushing keeper to break the deadlock, before missing an opportunity to double, riffling off the post from the spot. Barotov’s redemption came in the second half, as the striker scooped in from close-range; the keeper spilling his initial low drive. The frontman arrowed in his third from the edge of the area, before Kurbanov tucked in to cap off an emphatic Northern Tigers victory.
Khujand 1-2 Kuktosh
(Malodustov 36; Siebatcheu 49, Saidkhoja 56pen)
Malodustov’s close-range volley gave Khujand the lead after 36 minutes. Siebatcheu’s second-half header cancelled out the hosts’ advantage, before Saidkhoja stroked in from the spot for Kuktosh to take away all three points.
CSKA’s solid run of form continued in the 5-1 hammering of Regar-TadAZ. Nodding in the opener inside six minutes, Ibragimov steered in from a floated Bondar cross to double the deficit in the 66th minute. Bobodjonov struck back as Regar rallied, pouncing to fire home as the keeper fumbled his initial effort. However, killing the game off with two goals in three minutes, Sulaymonov and Kosimov punished disorganised hosts to conclude CKSA counter-attacks for goals three and four. With the final nail in the coffin, Kalandarov’s inch-perfect ball from the back fell for Gafforov, who brought it down with a wonderful first touch, nudged past the keeper and slotted home to cap off their game of the season thus far.
Nine rounds into the Tajikistan Higher League, we take a look at the state of play.
Winning four games by at least a five-goal margin, Istiklol’s unbeaten run has seen them tighten their grip at the top. CSKA have overturned a rocky start; finding their feet in gameweek five, and top-tier newcomers Dushanbe-83 have exceeded expectations and sit mid-table. Istiklol’s Dzhalilov brothers have dominated the scoring; Manuchekhr on 10 and Alisher on 8.