Bangladesh’s SAFF title hope shattered

Bangladesh U-20 national football team’s hope of winning the SAFF title shattered as they suffered a big margin of 2-5 goals defeat to defending champions India in the contested final match of SAFF U-20 Championship held Friday night at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, India.

Bangladesh fought neck to neck with India in the whole ninety minute that ended in a 2-2 draw, but Bangladesh could not take the pressure in the extra time and eventually lost the game.

In the day’s final, Gurkirat Singh, who was named the most valuable player of the championship, put India ahead early in the 2nd minute of the match giving his team a deserving lead.

Bangladesh tried heart and soul to stage a fight back and finally got the success in the 45thminute when Rajon Hawlader restored the parity as he sent the ball home with a fierce shot from goal mouth melee.

After the resumption, Shahin Mia again put Bangladesh ahead scoring the second goal in the 48th minute while Gurkirat again brought India in the match scoring his second goal in the 60th minute.

In the extra time, Himanshu Jhangta scored the third goal for defending champions in the 92nd minute while Gurkirat scored the remaining two goals for India in the 93rd and 99th minutes to seal India’s comprehensive victory in the final.

Sri Lanka were given the fair play award in the tournament.

Earlier, Bangladesh managed a hard-fought solitary goal victory over Sri Lanka in their tournament opening match and defeated host India by 2-1 goals in their second match, overpowered the Maldives by 4-1 goals in their third match and emerged top of the table after playing to a 1-1 goal draw with Nepal in the third match.

On the other hand, India began their 2022 SAFF U-20 Championship journey with a 1-2 defeat at hands of Bangladesh, drubbed Sri Lanka 4-0, thrashed Nepal 8-0 before beating Maldives 1-0 in their final league stage fixture.

Bangladesh U-20 squad- Mohammad Emon, Mohammad Asif, Shanto Kumar Ray, Tanvir Hossain, Imran Khan, Ashikur Rahman, Samuel Raksam, Shahin Ahammad, Rajon Hawladar, Azizul Hoque Ananto, Sirajul Islam Rana, Sojol Tripura, Nazmul Huda Faysal, Akkas Ali, Mojibor Rahman Jony, Moinul Islam Moin, Shahidul Islam, Mohammad Nahian, Mursed Ali, Rafiqul Islam, Sajed Hasan Jummon, Piyash Ahmmed Nova and Miraj Islam.

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