Monday, October 3

SAFF Women’s Championship : Top 5 Goal Scorers

By a Staff Reporter

With five times champions India knocked out by hosts Nepal in the semi-final, SAFF Women’s Championship got its new winner in the 6th edition.

Bangladesh clinched their maiden SAFF Women’s Championship trophy beating the home team Nepal by 3-1 on 19th September 2022 in Kathmandu. In a tournament that had notable events, both Bangladesh and Nepal beat India for the first time in tournament’s history.

Bangladesh thrashed India 3-0 in the final match of the group stage to top the group. India went ahead as Group A runner up and faced Group B toppers Nepal in the semi-final. Nepal then sidelined India from the semi-final for the first time in SAFF History. A solitary goal from Rashmi Ghising in the injury time of the first half was enough for Nepal to send back home.

Champions Bangladesh scored 23 goals and conceded just a goal, that too in the final. Runners Up Nepal scored 12 conceded 3. None of the losing team were able to score against their opponents in the tournament except for the final.

Bangladeshi skipper Sabina Khatun walked away with top scorer of the tournament award scoring 8 goals in 5 matches. The top 5 goal scorers of the SAFF Championship 2022 are as follows:

Sirat Jahan Shopna

Shopna scored 4 goals in the tournament. She opened her account against Pakistan in the 73rd minute of the match. She scored 2 past India and 1 against Bhutan. After picking up injury in semifinal win over Bhutan, Shopna started the final and lasted only 10 minutes.

Krishna Rani Sarkar

Krishna Rani Sarkar who led the Bangladesh U-14 team to the title of AFC U-14 Championship 2015 (South and Central Region) played pivotal role in final of SAFF Championship too. With brace in the final, she scored 4 goals in the SAFF Women’s Championship 2022. She scored a piece against India & Bhutan to take the team to the final.

Anju Tamang

Indian forward Anju Tamang was talk of the town when a video of her singing a Nepali song went viral on social media. Tamang’s all four goals in the tournament came against Maldives in the group stage match.

Nadia Khan

Pakistan Women’s team participated in the international tournament for the first time in 8 years. Nadia Khan, a British-Pakistani player debuted for Pakistan in this tournament. After losing first two matches, Nadia and Pakistan found their goalscoring touch. She scored a hattrick against Maldives to drive her team to a 7-0 win.

Khan plays for Doncaster Rovers Belles Ladies Football Club. The club competes in FA Women’s National League Division One Midlands, the fourth tier of women’s football in England.

Sabina Khatun

The Bangladeshi skipper Sabina Khatun took away the award of Highest Goal Scorer and the Most Valuable Player in the SAFF Women’s Championship.

Born on 25 October 1993, Khatun started to play football in 2007 and marked her debut on the National team in 2009. Khatun struck 8 goals with two hattricks and a brace in the tournament.

A brace against Maldives in the opener of the championship and hat-tricks against Pakistan and Bhutan made her the highest goal scorer of the championship.

Bangladeshi team was led by Golam Robbani Choton, who has been part of the women’s team setup since 2009. He also led the U-14 team back in 2015 in AFC U-14 Championship 2015 (South and Central Region) in Nepal. 8 members of the U-14 team were in the senior squad in SAFF.

3 of the 5 top goal scorers of the championship are from Bangladesh. After a decade long effort, Bangladesh’s investment in women’s football from the grassroots level proved to be fruitful.

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