THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

Indian Women’s national team down Sri Lanka 4-0

India Women's National Team
India Women's National Team

Picture courtesy: AIFF Media

The Indian Women’s National Team downed Sri Lanka 4-0 in their opening encounter of the Rio 2016 Women’s Qualifiers Round 1 at the Mandalar Thiri Sports Stadium in Mandalay, Myanmar on Friday (March 13, 2015).

A Goal apiece from Kamala Devi, Ashalata Devi, Radharani and an own-goal, led the Indian eves to an easy win over their opponents.

On a day when ‘dominate’ seemed to be the word, the Indian Women started their opening fixture of Olympic Qualifiers on an attacking note. In the 2nd minute, Kamala Devi released Bala Devi onto goal, whose shot was saved acrobatically by Nisansala and earned a corner in the process.

The resulting corner witnessed the Indian Women notch up another gear as Sasmita Malik’s effort, following a brilliantly crafted set piece scenario, was thwarted away once again by the Sri Lankan shot-stopper.

Nevertheless, fortune smiled upon the Indian eves in the 12th minute. After an exquisite one touch play around Sri Lanka’s 18 yard box which put her onto goal, Kamala Devi did sheer justice to her chance and blasted the ball into the back of the net, to hand India the lead.

Five minutes later the Indian Women doubled their lead as Ashalata Devi’s screamer looped over Nisansala and ended up in the back of the net.

The Indian defence had a treat of a day, as they constantly disrupted Sri Lanka’s attacking move by, as if almost reading their minds.

The Indian eves came close to tripling their lead in the 39th minute when Bembem Devi screamer re-bounced off the woodwork.

Even in the dying embers of the first half, the Indian Women piled pressure, as they dominated possession. Sasmita Malik’s effort from the right asphalt after evading her marker and cutting inside, flew whiskers over the post.

At the interval, a dominant performance by India saw them lead 2-0 against Sri Lanka.

The Indian Women took off from where they left, and a rambunctious Kamala Devi tore down the right asphalt after the restart to earn a corner.

Following some quick interchanges, India struck again, this time albeit, through an own-goal by Malisha Nilini in the 48th minute.

An intenerate Sri Lankan defence once again gave way to Kamala Devi in the 51st minute. Although Kamala’s shot flew inches wide of the post.

Six minutes later, Radharani’s looping effort from the edge of the 18 yard box saw the light of day, as it left Sri Lanka’s goalkeeper bewildered, as if though bewitched, and ended in the back of the net.

With India enjoying possession and orchestrating the pace of the match, Sri Lanka opted to commit bodies. Nevertheless, even bodies behind the ball could not stop India regularly testing the Sri Lankan Goalkeeper.

Sasmita Malik came close to scoring in the 82nd minute when she bewitched her marking defender, zig-zagged her way into the penalty box, only for her shot to be heroically saved by the Nisansala.

Gunning for their fifth Goal of the match, the Indian Eves once again tested Nisansala’s acrobatics as Sangita’s header, following a corner kick was saved in the 87th minute.

An array of attacking movements were fostered by the Indian Eves in the dying moments of the match, though none saw the back of the net.

India held on to their four goal advantage and registered an easy win. The Indian Women meet Myanmar next in their Olympic Qualifiers on March 15, 2015.

(Report & Picture courtesy AIFF Media)