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Thursday, June 13, 2024

National Games: Manipur, Odisha set up a title clash in Women’s football

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After National Championships disappointment, Manipur are back on track in women’s football.

Considered the powerhouse of women’s football, Manipur’s early exit from the National championships earlier this year came as a surprise to the fans. But, on Friday, Manipur couldn’t be stopped anymore as they reached the final of the Women’s Football event in the 37th National Games at the expense of Haryana.

In the final, to be played on Sunday, Manipur will take on Odisha, who got the better of Bengal in the other semi-finals. Both the penultimate round matches were extended to tie-breakers as 90 minutes of intense battles failed to break the deadlock.

While Odisha beat Bengal 5-4 on penalties after a goalless draw, Manipur got the better of Haryana 3-2 as the regulation time scores remained 1-1. Sanju Yadav put Haryana in the lead, but Moirangthem Ambika Devi restored parity for Manipur.

At Fatorda, Services and Punjab entered the last four from Group A in the Men’s Football event. The two were left in the same group are hosts Goa Santosh Trophy champions Karnataka.

Goa’s exit was confirmed when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Punjab, who led 1-0 at half time thanks to a Gurmeet Chand goal. Goa equalised through Joshua D’Silva.

Services made the grade when they edged Karnataka by a solitary goal scored by Bikash Thapa during the closing stages of the match.

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