India lose to Chinese Taipei, AFC Cup dream ends

Ramallah, May 24 (IANS) The Indian women’s football team’s dream of qualifying for the AFC Cup fell by the wayside as they went down fighting 1-2 to Chinese Taipei, who notched their second consecutive win, in a group D encounter at the Faisal Al Huseni Stadium here.

Yu Hsiu Chin and Lai Li Chin scored either side of a fine set-piece equaliser from Sasmita Malik in the 53rd minute to secure the win for Taipei Thursday. Courtesy the result, they move to six points from two matches while India, in spite of spirited displays, remain without a point.

If the twice-SAFF Champions won the tactical battle in the first half, they were by far the better side in the second period. Head Coach Anadi Barua’s ploy of playing deep and attacking on the counter paid off as Taipei, who scored six against Palestine in their opening game, were bottled up in the final third by India’s defence.

The second half belonged to India and Sasmita Malik whose classy free kick in the 53rd minute got her team back in the game.

However, Li Chin’s goal nine minutes from time broke Indian hearts who all the while were enjoying ball possession and swift flank play.

In the other match of the day, Myanmar blanked Palestine 9-0. Striker Yee Yee Oo found the back of the net seven times with six of them coming in the second half as Myanmar ran riot against a hapless Palestine outfit.

Courtesy the win, Myanmar go to six points from two matches while the hosts are yet to open their account.

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