A 66.7% win record in the last 18 matches played since January 2019 propelled the Indian Senior Women’s National Team to jump six places to 57 in the FIFA Women’s Ranking released on July 12. Currently, the Indian women are ranked 11th in Asia.
Since January 2019, the women’s have played 18 matches winning 12, drawn 1, and lost 5. The matches are from their exposure tours to Hong Kong, Indonesia, Turkey, the SAFF Championship in Nepal, the AFC Olympic Qualifiers Round 2 in Myanmar, besides the inaugural Hero Gold Cup international tournament in Bhubaneswar. The team is next slated to play the COTIF Cup in Spain later this month.
Head Coach Maymol Rocky credited the players “for working hard” for the rise in the FIFA ladder.
“The entire nation will be happy that the Women’s Team has climbed six spots in the FIFA Rankings. The entire credit goes with the girls. They have worked hard for it, and we need to work harder from now on,” Maymol said.
Iconic Indian striker Sunil Chhetri, currently the second highest goal scorer in International Football among active players with 70 goals stated that he is ““extremely proud of the girls”.
“They have been doing really well. I’m really proud of the girls. I’ve spoken to them once before recently, and told them they can do wonders. I hope they keep working hard, keep doing what they are doing. I’m sure things will keep on improving,” Chhetri said from Ahmedabad, where the Blue Tigers are playing in the ongoing Intercontinental Cup.
The women’s team are currently camping in the Capital for their preparation for the forthcoming COTIF Cup.
AIFF’s Director of National Teams, and former India captain Abhishek Yadav added that the “women’s football have picked up the momentum”.
“Women’s football in India has picked up momentum. AIFF along with Sports Authority of India, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, and Government of Odisha have a dedicated plan to promote women’s football, and provide further exposure to the Women’s Senior National team,” he explained.
AIFF Player of the Year 2018-19 Ashalata Devi felt “the aim should be to climb higher”.
“Currently, we are 11th in Asia. We are aware of our abilities. The self-belief after the exposure tours has been driving us. We need to break into the top 10 in Asia.”
Goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan added, “As a team we are really proud of the effort which we put in, and the results we’ve got since assembling in December last year. Our new ranking will motivate us further to keep pushing ourselves.”
“There is a bit of a gap between the top-ranked teams, and where we are at the moment. But everyone – the players, the staff, AIFF, the Government are working very hard to provide the girls all the facilities to close down that gap,” the Coach explained.