Reigning champions Bangladesh will take on hosts Bhutan in the second semi-final of the second SAFF Under-15 Women’s Championship at the Changlimithang Stadium in Thimpu today.
The match will kick-off at 7:00pm Bangladesh Standard Time.
Bangladesh thrashed Pakistan 14-0 in their first group match before beating Nepal 3-0 in the second match to emerge as Group B champions.
On the other hand, Bhutan finished as Group A runners-up following their win against Sri Lanka in their opening match and losing their last group match against India.
Bangladesh head coach Golam Rabbani Choton was confident ahead of facing the home side.
‘The striking thing is that, these girls played their last nine games with the same rhythm and speed,’ said Choton, who had been in charge of the team for the last two-and-half years.
‘We won four matches in the last SAFF tournament and continued that tempo to a tournament in Hong Kong. So, my only hope is to continue the form until the end of this tournament.’
Choton said he was a bit concerned over the high altitude and unfamiliar condition of Thimpu before the tournament started.
‘I was a bit tensed with the altitude and condition but in the last two games the girls proved that they coped with the condition very well and they were enjoying their game,’ Choton said.
However, Choton refused to take Bhutan lightly considering their home advantage.
‘I think this match will be different from the first two matches as we have to play against the home side as they will get home support,’ he said.
‘I just told my girls to play their natural game and win the challenge.’
Striker Samsunnahar, the highest scorer in this tournament so far with four goals, wasn’t afraid of the extra-pressure of facing the hosts.
‘Everything depends on how we play in the game. We have the ability to beat Bhutan so we are not feeling any extra-pressure,’ Samsunnahar said.
In the first semi-final, Group A champions India will face Group B runners-up Nepal at 4:00pm Bangladesh Standard Time at the same venue.
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