APF claim women’s football league

Lalitpur, January 11

Nepal APF Club defeated Nepal Police Club 3-1 to win the title of the 16th National Women’s Football League here at the ANFA Complex grounds today.

Sabitra Bhandari scored a brace and Saru Limbu added one for APF, while Rupa Magar scored the consolation goal for NPC.

APF accumulated nine points from three matches of the Super League round played among four teams. APF had also won all three matches in the group stage.

Meanwhile, TAC defeated Far-west 7-0 and finished second with six points, while NPC came third. Far-west lost all three matches.

In the day’s second match, Bhandari put APF ahead in the 17th minute. Bhandari scored from close after NPC’s goalkeeper Sushmita Thakuri fumbled on Renuka Nagarkoti’s free kick. Limbu doubled the tally two minutes later capitalizing on the miscommunication among NPC defenders.

NPC tried to bounce back in the game and cut the deficit in the 34th minute when Magar scored in a rebound after APF custodian Anjila Subba failed to collect Dipa Neupane’s shot. After the interval, Bhandari scored her second and team’s third goal in the 75th minute to seal the victory.

APF coach Janak Singh said his side was able to win the title despite haveing short period for preparation. “Our players were on election duty and we got late information about the tournament,” said Singh, whose squad included nine players from the national team. “But the players put in their best efforts and we could win the title,” he added.

Singh said the TAC players were better in physical and fitness due to regular training. “TAC had a better side as their players were not deployed in election duty and got regular training,” he added. “And the NPC were not up to the mark as a couple of players of their team quit for foreign employment,” said Singh.

Meanwhile, TAC defeated Far-west riding on skipper Krishna Khatri’s five goals. Sharmila Thapa Magar and Bimala Chaudhary added a goal each. Champions APF got Rs 200.000, while runners-up TAC received Rs 100,000 and NPC pocketed Rs 50,000.

APF’s Sabitra Bhandari, who netted 27 goals in the tournament, was declared the best forward and her teammate Anjali Subba was named the best goalkeeper.

Janak Singh of APF was named the best coach. TAC’s Dipa Rai and Anjila Waiba were adjudged the best defender and midfielder respectively. The individual award winners got Rs 25,000 each.