Nepal | August 24, 2019

India dash Nepal’s Olympic hopes

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, April 6

Nepal national women’s football team faced their second successive defeat in the second round match of the AFC Women’s Olympic Football Tournament Qualifiers at the Mandalar Thiri Stadium in Myanmar today.

Nepal lost 3-1 at hands of India in the second match of the competition that also ended their 2020 Olympic Games hopes. Nepal, who made it to Olympic qualifiers second round in their maiden participation, had faced a 3-1 defeat against Myanmar on Wednesday.

India made a flying start with flurry of attacks and they took lead in the sixth minute of the match when Punam Jargha Magar scored an own goal after the Nepali defender guided the ball into her own nets while trying to clear the ball. The Indian lead, however, did not last long. Nepal skipper Niru Thapa levelled the scores in the seventh minute after she capitalised on defensive error from her counterpart Ashalata Devi.

India slammed two unanswered goals in the second half to seal the victory.

Sandhiya Ranganathan restored the lead in the 60th minute following a corner kick, while skipper Ashalata Devi converted from the spot in the 79th minute.

India had defeated Nepal by the same scoreline when the two sides met in the final of the SAFF Women’s Championship in Biratnagar last month. With the victory, India extended their win record to eight matches — including six in finals. Nepal have won just one match against the neighbours and that came in the group stage match of the Hero Gold Cup in February in Guwahati. In their 12 meetings, the two teams have played two draws.

Nepal will play against Indonesia in the third and final match on Tuesday, while India face Myanmar.

A version of this article appears in print on April 07, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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