India win fifth consecutive SAFF Women’s Championship
India won their fifth consecutive SAFF Women’s Football championship on Friday defeating hosts Nepal 3-1 in the final.
Dalima Chhiber, Grace Dangmei and substitute Anju scored for the team. This win has extended India’s run in the tournament history to 23 games.
The pace of the match was intense from the word go as both sides pressed hard to score.
Dalima was able to provide India with the first goal, just like the semi-final clash against Bangladesh. She was able to give India the lead in the 26th minute of the match when she smashed the ball past the keeper from a free-kick from 30 yards with a powerful drive and put the defending champions into a 1-0 lead.
Nepal came back strongly in the 34th minute, as Sabitra equalized for the hosts.
At the halfway mark, the scoreline was tied at 1-1. But the second half saw attacking game from both teams. In the second half, India created several chances. India’s momentum finally paid off in the 63rd minute when Grace got her name on the scoring sheet.
Coach Maymol Rocky brought on Anju Tamang in place of Sandhiya midway through the second half and in the 78th minute of the match, the move paid off as she too was able to get her name on the scoring sheet, breaking the back of the hosts.
Nepal kept on striding hard, but India’s defence was able to maintain a hold, resulting in an Indian win.