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Indian Women's Football

SAFF U-17 Women's Championship: India face daunting task against table leaders Russia

Published at :March 28, 2023 at 3:34 AM
Modified at :December 13, 2023 at 1:01 PM
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(Courtesy : AIFF Media)

Joseph Biswas

The young Tigresses are currently third in the standings with two wins from three matches.

India bounced back from a disappointing defeat against hosts Bangladesh with a 9-0 thumping of Bhutan to re-establish their hopes at the 2023 SAFF U-17 Women's Championship. India will face Russia in their final game of the tournament on Tuesday, March 28, 2023, at the BSSS Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Dhaka. The match will kick off at 18:45 IST and will be streamed live on the Sportzworkz YouTube Channel.

The Young Tigresses have had a mixed bag of results so far at the tournament, dazzling when on form — as they were against Nepal and Bhutan, winning 4-1 and 9-0. Their narrow loss to Bangladesh has them third in the table — they are equal on points as the hosts but have an inferior head-to-head record.

India’s charge has been led by Shilji Shaji, who is the leading scorer of the Championship, with eight goals. Shaji has so far registered two hat tricks in the three games she’s played. India’s 13 goals have so far been scored by five different players — only Russia have spread them around more as seven of their players have got their names on the scoresheet.

India’s next opponents are a daunting team, who have so far registered three straight wins and have conceded only once (via an own goal) in the Championship. India go into the final game knowing that a win may not entirely assure them of the title but will definitely help create history and leave a lasting memory.

“We were happy with the performance in the last game,” head coach PV Priya said. “More than the goals, it was also important to keep a clean sheet. We haven’t done that and it is a boost for our confidence. We will go into the final game with a positive mindset and hope to gain as much as we can out of it whether it be in terms of points or learnings and experience,” she said.