India U-17 women's team to tour Hong Kong with an eye on World Cup

India U-17 women's team head coach Alex Ambrose believes that the matches in Hong Kong will give the girls an opportunity to test themselves against tough opponents.

The India U-17 women's football team will play four matches in Hong Kong in June.   -  AIFF Media

The India U-17 women's team will travel to Hong Kong to play four matches as a part of its preparation for the U-17 Women's World Cup in India next year.

The India U-17 side -- still a project under construction -- has been training in Goa for the last few weeks and will leave for Hong Kong on June 16. Although the side has played a number of matches against local teams, head coach Alex Ambrose believes that the four matches in Hong Kong will give his girls an opportunity to test themselves against tough opponents.

“The matches in Hong Kong will serve as good experience for these kids. Almost 40 per cent of them are new to the national team set-up, and are still getting used to things,” said Ambrose. “Playing competitive teams will help acclimatise them to the top levels of football.”

He further went on to state that matches like these will help test the character of the players. “It will also help us coaches identify the players who have a strong mentality and tend to take the right decisions even when they are under pressure.”

READ | U-17 Women's World Cup: India hosts, game plan awaited

However, Ambrose maintained that the key objective of the players and the coaching staff remains to prepare the team for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup next year.

“Learning never stops, and that applies to everyone. My players have shown their interest, character and the dedication required to be a part of such a big tournament, and the future looks good if they keep working hard,” he said.

“The most important thing right now is to understand how to get ready for the U-17 World Cup. The focus is always for the next year,” Ambrose rounded off.

Schedule:

21st June: India vs Hong Kong U23

23rd June: India vs Taipo TBC

27th June: India vs Citizen

29th June: India vs Hong Kong U18

 

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Tanu, Manisha, Manju.

Defenders: Nirmala Devi Phanjoubam, Kritina Devi Thounaojam, Nisha, Naketa, Shilky Devi Hemam, Martina Thokchom.

Midfielders: Daisy Castro, Priyanka Devi Naorem, Astam Orain, Anju, Priyanka Sujeesh Pottekkat, Poonam, Aveka Singh, Mariyammal Balamurgan, Karen Estrocio, Kiran, Antrika.

Forwards: Sumati Kumari, Lynda Kom Serto, Amisha Baxla, Sai Sanke.

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