Bala Devi eager to make her mark in Indian Women's League

After missing the inaugural edition of the Indian Women's League, Bala Devi is determined to prove her detractors wrong.

Bala Devi in action for KRYHPSA in the Indian Women's League.   -  AIFF Media


Ngangom Bala Devi is ‘determined to prove detractors wrong’ with her performances in the ongoing Indian Women’s League. After an AIFF ruling forced her out of participation in the inaugural edition, the senior women’s national team captain is all geared to make her mark this time around.

“I want to perform at my best. After my injury people said I’m finished. I’m determined to prove detractors wrong,” said Devi.

Plying her trade for KRYHPSA in the IWL, Bala has already made people sit up and notice with her team’s 5-0 demolition of Sethu FC. “Everything clicked for us. It was a perfect day of football for the entire team,” she said.

“Personally, too, I’m happy that I was able to score and was involved in two other goals. But this is just the beginning. Anything can happen,” summing up her performance.

The Indian Women’s League has a more competitive look this season. Traditional powerhouses of Indian women’s football, Manipur, has two teams vying for the title. The defending champion – Eastern Sporting Union and Bala’s own KRYHPSA.

While, the former is led by the legendary Bembem Devi, the latter has Chaoba Devi leading the charge. With India regulars in their ranks, both teams are certainly the ones to beat. But the others too have strengthened their ranks.

Last year’s finalist Rising Students Club, Sethu FC, India Rush SC, Indira Gandhi ASE and Gokulam Kerala FC – all have a good mix of youth and experience and can beat any team on their day. Bala knows this and has her take on it, “The IWL has certainly grown this year. Each team has the ability to win against the other. So, we cannot take any team lightly.”

“Sethu has Tamil Nadu players who did well in the Women’s Senior NFC as well as Indira. Rising Students have strong set of players so do Rush and Gokulam,” she went on to add.

The Indian Women’s League also provides the platform for a lot of young talent to shine through and catch the eyes of the scouts watching. “The professional setup helps. Many young players want to prove that they have it to play against the best while the seniors want to show that they can still perform at the top.”

“It is healthy as well as a cut-throat competition at the same time as every team wants to win”, she signed off.

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