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Valiant Bangladesh women lose Saff final

  • Published at 12:49 am January 5th, 2017
Valiant Bangladesh women lose Saff final
Bangladesh suffered a 3-1 defeat against host India in the 2016 South Asian Football Federation Women's Championship in what was their first ever appearance in the competition's final at Kanchenjunga Stadium in Siliguri on Wednesday. It was India's fourth consecutive Saff Championship title meaning they have now won all the editions since the competition's introduction in 2010. Dangmei Grace put the home side ahead in the 12th minute. This is the first time Bangladesh goalkeeper Sabina Akter conceded a goal in the tournament. Bangladesh fought back bravely and equalised in the 38th minute through young forward Sirat Jahan Shopna, who had netted a hattrick against Maldives in the semi-finals. Sasmita Malik gave the hosts the lead again at the hour mark from a penalty before Indumathi sealed victory in the 66th minute. In the last three editions held in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Pakistan respectively, India and Nepal were the finalists on all the occasions. Bangladesh emerged as south Asia's second best team through this fourth edition with players who just began their journey with the senior side. The Bangladesh squad was formed with most of the players hailing from the under-16 side. Fifteen out of 20 players in the squad featured in the Asian Football Confederation's U-16 Women's Championship qualifiers in September last year. Bangladesh women began their campaign with a comprehensive 6-0 victory over Afghanistan. They faced India in their second group stage match where they were held to a goalless draw. It was the first time any team earned a draw against India, who had a hundred percent winning record in the previous three editions. Bangladesh then crushed Maldives 6-0 in the last four. Bangladesh team are scheduled to return home Thursday night.