Shillong, Feb 8: Meghalaya tasted defeat at the hands of Kerala in the semifinal of the Khelo India Youth Games football event for the second year running as they lost a manic match 5-3 in Indore today.

It was against the same opponents that their campaign in the Khelo India Youth Games came to an end last year after Meghalaya were pipped on penalties in the last-four stage. Kerala went on to finish as runners-up.

Today, Meghalaya took the lead in the third minute through Batskhemlang Jyrwa but Kerala equalised and took the lead in quick time thanks to Shibin P (13′) and Al Yasah AP (14′).

Nanda Kishor CP (33′) added another for Kerala to make it 3-1 in Kerala’s favour before Blanangshngain Khongsdam scored two rapid goals of his own in the 36th and 39th minutes to equalise for Meghalaya.

The first half still wasn’t done, however, as Shibin gave Kerala the lead once again with a goal in the second minute of stoppage time.

After seven goals in the first 45 minutes, it was a wonder that only one more was scored in the second half, from Sreeraj CP (52′) for Kerala. Meghalaya fought all the way but they couldn’t get back into the match and bowed out in the last-four once again.

It was another successful group stage, however, with Meghalaya topping Group B thanks to wins over Odisha and Karnataka and a draw against West Bengal.

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