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Turkish Women’s Cup: Soumya dedicates goal against Hong Kong to parents, coach

Soumya scored her fifth international goal against Hong Kong at the Turkish Women's Cup, and she dedicated this one to her parents and coach.

Turkish Women’s Cup: Soumya dedicates goal against Hong Kong to parents, coach

Soumya Guguloth fighting for the control of the ball against Hong Kong at the Turkish Women's Cup. 


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 25 Feb 2024 11:44 AM GMT

The Indian women's team registered a 2-0 clinical victory over Hong Kong on Saturday night, with Anju Tamang and Soumya Guguloth scoring the goals.

The Blue Tigresses, with two back-to-back wins, have deservingly earned the right to buy a huge date with history on Tuesday when they meet Kosovo in the concluding tie in Alanya, Turkey.

A victory would fetch India their first-ever international title outside the South Asian region.

Reflecting on the victory, Soumya, who is still five months away from her 23rd birthday, said, "We were trying for more goals in the first half after the first goal by Anju (Tamang) Didi, but it didn’t happen the way we wanted it to."

Soumya from Telangana is a widely travelled and much-experienced footballer. A star with the IWL side Gokulam Kerala FC, she played for Dinamo Zagreb in the Croatian league. It didn’t take much time for her to realise how important it was to win the Hong Kong tie to have a go at the title and she rose to the occasion promptly.

“In the second half, we reorganised ourselves fully and went for attacks. I wasn’t really expecting to score a goal. But when the opportunity arose, I cut past the goalkeeper at full speed and scored. The ball was going out, but I managed to control it and find the target,” she added, wearing a smile on her face.

It was Soumya's fifth international goal and she dedicated this one to her parents and coach.

It was the fifth goal for Soumya in an official international. “I dedicate the goal to my parents and my coach,” she said.

The goal, expectedly, thrilled her to a great extent; her style of celebration resembled that of Cristiano Ronaldo’s iconic jump in the air with a mid-air pirouette. “I've always been a fan of Ronaldo, so I did it like him,” Soumya said.

'Aim now is to score against Kosovo': Anju

Anju Tamang has been one of India’s frequent scorers in international football, but the goal against Hong Kong remained special to her.

“I am very happy that I was able to score for the team. The goal came the way we planned it yesterday with the coach and trained. My aim now is to score the next goal (against Kosovo) and be more clinical in the finishing third,” she said.

However, the Indian women's team head coach, Langam Chaoba Devi, wasn’t exactly overwhelmed by the Hong Kong triumph but remained confident of a better show in the title-clinching Kosovo encounter.

“The Hong Kong win is over and we are now readying for the Kosovo battle. We will try our level best and go all out to bag the Turkish Women’s Cup. We will all be motivated for the last match of the tournament,” she said.

Chaoba Devi is happy with the improved performance the team put up against Hong Kong.

“Our intensity was better in the first match against Estonia. I can assure you that my girls will not play this way (like in the Hong Kong match) against Kosovo. They will display their best fighting quality in the last match,” said Chaoba, a former defender who enjoyed a decade-long international career during her playing days.

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