NEPAL MADE A WINNING start in their SAFF Women's Championship campaign at Kathmandu today.
Facing Bhutan in the opening fixture, the hosts were dominant throughout. While Bhutan had some early chances in a heavily rain soaked Dasarath Rangashala Stadium, Nepal soon assumed control and Sabitra Bhandari, who plays in Gokulam Kerala FC, got their early break-through.
While Bhutan defended their heart out, somewhat aided by the waterlogged pitch which continuously played spoilsport in Nepal's attempts to build their attacks, in the second half as the ground got more dry Nepal's movements on the ball improved and with time, they started having more success. Sabitra got her second goal right after the hour mark and then it was Sethu FC star player Anita Basnet's turn to get a brace of her own to make it a 4-0 victory.
Nepal will face Sri Lanka next on 12th September. As the heavy favourites to top Group B, Nepal's strong start indicates that the 2022 edition is also setting up a thrilling encounter between the hosts and defending champions India in the grand finale.