Bangladesh clinched the title of the inaugural edition of SAFF Under-15 Women’s Championship beating India 1-0 on Sunnday in the final at Birshrestha Shaheed Sepoy Mohammad Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur.
The hosts remained unbeaten, conceding no goals during the tournament. After crushing Nepal 6-0 in their first match, the girls beat Bhutan 3-0 and India 3-0 in the run up to the finals.
Bangladesh played aggressively from kickoff at Bir Shreshtha Shaheed Sepoy Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur on Sunday. In the sixth minute a header from Anuching Mogini flew just over the crossbar.
India mounted their first counterattack in the ninth minute, but the free-kick by Pavithra Murugesan flew straight into the waiting gloves of goalkeeper Mahmuda Akhter.
Bangladesh seemed ready to pull ahead in the 22nd minute when Anuching Mogini found herself in a one-on-one situation, but her strike was deflected away by Indian goalkeeper Shijagurumayum Monika Devi.
Tohura Khatun displayed some fireworks in the 32nd minute, cutting past two defenders, only to have a difficult shot graze off the post.
Bangladesh finally found success before the half, when defender Shamsunnahar, in her second goal of the tournament, capitalised on a ball deflected away by Devi.
The hosts had a chance to extend their lead just after the break with a corner, but Anuching’s header sailed over the crossbar. She had another chance in the 57th minute, but the strike was punched away by Indian goalie
Tohura could have added to the score in the 61st minute as a long pass from Marzia was flicked to her feet by Anuching, but the forward’s attempt to evade the Indian keeper fell short.
Bangladesh only mounted on pressure as the match wore on, but both Ritu Porna Chakma nor Shamsunnahar failed to get crosses from Monika Chakma into the back of the net.
The fans may have been pushing for another goal to cap the match, they were still ecstatic at the final whistle, glad to have seen a well-deserved victory.