Nepal play draw with hosts Myanmar in qualifiers
Kathmandu, November 11
Nepal played a 1-1 draw with hosts Myanmar in the AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament at the Thuwanna Football Stadium in Yangon on Sunday.
Sabitra Bhandari gave an early lead to Nepal after she converted the spot kick in the second minute of the match. Nepal earned the penalty after Wai Wai Sung brought down Bhandari with just 43 seconds on the clock.
The home side levelled the scores in the 13th minute when Khin Moe Wai converted the corner kick after Nepal goalkeeper Anjila Tumbapo Subba judge the ball that entered the goal with a deflection to her gloves.
Bhandari missed a chance to restore the lead in the 59th minute. She failed to score in one-on-one with Myanmar goalkeeper after exchanging nice one-two passes with Saru Limbu. Nepal custodian Subba saved Nepal from going down with a brilliant save and Geeta Rana made a goal-line clearance in a rebound attempt from home team. Nepal were unlucky in the 79th minute as Punam Jargha Magar’s header hit the cross bar.
In an early match, India thumped Bangladesh 7-1. After the day’s results, India moved to the top of the Group C with four points, ahead of hosts Myanmar only on superior goal difference. Nepal, who had played a 1-1 draw with India in their first match, are third with two points, while Bangladesh are yet to open their accounts.
A total of 17 teams — divided into four pools — are taking part in the Qualifying. Top two teams each from the four groups and two best third-placed teams will advance to the second round, where they will join Vietnam and Uzbekistan — who received byes as sixth and seventh ranked teams in the FIFA Women’s World Rankings.
The 12 teams will then be divided into three pools and the group winners will make it to the third round. Top five ranked teams — Australia, North Korea, China, South Korea and Thailand — have been directly drawn in third round. The teams will be divided into two groups with top two from each pool making it to the final round. Out of the four teams in the final round, top two will earn berths in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.