Women’s Asia Cup qualifiers: Indian team flies to North Korea

The Indian eves, currently ranked 56th in the FIFA rankings, will play their first match against host North Korea (ranked 10th) on April 3.

India will play four matches in the Women’s Asia Cup Qualifiers in North Korea.   -  AIFF Media

The Indian Women's football team has left for North Korea to take part in the 2018 Women’s Asia Cup qualifiers. The Indian eves, currently ranked 56th in the FIFA rankings, will play their first match against host North Korea (ranked 10th) on April 3.

India, captained by the experienced forward Bala Devi, will also take on South Korea, Uzbekistan and Hong Kong in the Asia Cup Qualifiers. Coach Sajid Dar has retained the core of the team that won the SAFF women's championship though midfielder Kamala Devi Yumnam has opted out of the tournament due to personal reasons.

India’s fixtures:
  • April 03: DPR Korea v India
  • April 05: India v Korea Republic
  • April 07: Uzbekistan v India
  • April 11: India v Hong Kong

Goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan will also miss the tournament as she nurses an injury. Forward Anju Tamang has made it to the squad on the back of some excellent performances for her club Rising Student's Club (Odisha) in the Indian Women's League (IWL).

According to sources, coach Dar focused on defensive training and shape ahead of the tournament, with the team likely to be under the pump against higher ranked teams. India's counter-attacking strategy will depend on how well 2016 AIFF Player of the Year, Sasmita Malik, Bala Devi and Dangmei Grace operate in the front-line.

SQUAD

GOALKEEPERS: Panthoi Chanu, Vijaya Kumar Vinitha, Roshini Devi

DEFENDERS: Ashalata Devi, Radharani Devi, Manisa Panna, Umapati Devi, Sweety Devi, Dalima Chhibber, Poonam Sharma

MIDFIELDERS: Premi Devi, Indumathi, Sangita Basfore, Ngoubi Devi, Lochana Munda, Ratanbala Devi, Michel Castanha, Sasmita Malik,

FORWARDS: Bala Devi, Sanju, Anju Tamang, Kashmina, Dangmei Grace

HEAD COACH: Sajid Dar

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