SAFF WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP

Bangladesh brace for Indian juggernaut

Staff Correspondent | Published: 00:00, Mar 19,2019 | Updated: 01:16, Mar 19,2019

 
 

Bangladesh women’s football team player Akhi Khatun is seen streching ahead of their semi-final final match against India in SAFF Women’s Championship at Biratnagar in Nepal on Monday. — BFF photo

Bangladesh women’s team were looking to rectify their past defensive mistakes as they braced themselves for their daunting semi-final match against four-time champions India in the SAFF Women’s Championship 2019 on March 20.
Bangladesh failed to avoid formidable India in the semi-final after suffering a 0-3 defeat against Nepal in Group A decider, where their defenders made some costly errors resulting in goals for the oppositions.
Bangladesh defenders would have to better their game against India, who scored 11 goals in the two group-stage matches, if they wished to win the match.
‘We have made two mistakes against Nepal and the coaches held separate meetings with the defenders to make us understand about those mistakes,’ central defender Akhi Khatun told reporters.
‘We are yet to know the game plan of semi-final yet but India usually launch attacks from both flanks and we, defenders, have to deal that well,’ she added.
Bangladesh had suffered a massive 1-7 defeat against India in their last encounter at the Tokyo Olympic Qualifiers in November.
The girls in red and green, however, did earn a goalless draw against India in the group-stage of the previous edition of the SAAF Championship before succumbing to a 1-3 defeat in the final.
Bangladesh forward Krishna Rani Sarker, who is expected to come back into the side after missing the group-stage due to a knee injury, wanted to draw inspiration from their last edition’s performance and believed they could beat them.
‘We held India in group-stage match [previous edition] before suffering a 1-3 defeat in the final. If we can draw with them two years ago, then why we can’t beat them now,’ Krishna told reporters on Monday.
Vice-captain Mishrat Jahan Moushumi refrained from commenting on what the result of the match could be but hoped to play their natural game and present a competitive match against India.
‘The semifinal is a do-or-die match and we will be trying to play in that way. I can’t tell you what will be the result but I can say that the match will be very competitive if we perform our natural game,’ she said.

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