Indian girls learn from Vietnam football festivalJune 30th, 2008 - 8:46 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, June 30 (IANS) Twenty-two under-13 Indian women footballers who landed here last night after taking part in the seven-nation Asian Football Confederation (AFC)Festival in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, are satisfied with their first ever exposure abroad. Being a developmental children’s football festival, it was not strictly competitive in nature. No points for victories or draws, but only green cards for fair play. And if these green cards were any yardstick, then the Indian girls, captained by Tanvi Bhargava, emerged number two with 24 green cards, one behind China.
Assistant coach R.K. Amausana Devi of Manipur told IANS that the Indian contingent was surprised to find teams like China and Japan fielding players who appeared older than the stipulated age of 13 years.
But out of politeness none thought of pointing out such things, leave alone protest. To do that would have gone against the festival nature of the tour.
The duration of the matches was shortened to two halves of 30 minutes each, said Amausana.
Asked about Indian players, who did well in the festival, Amausana said: “For a first exposure the girls in general fared well. Still, if one had to pick a few who stood out, they were Lhienghitin of Manipur, Orissa girl Suva Prava Rout and Tanvi”
Tanvi said the Ho Chi Minh City exposure was a good experience. The Class VIII girl from Mayo College, Ajmer, said that the players managed to strike up new friendships and camaraderie after overcoming initial difficulties because of the language problem.
Tanvi of Chandigarh, a striker, endorsed her assistant coach’s view that some Chinese girls appeared “overage.” After the first format was over the girls, divided in groups of four or five, underwent a skills test.
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