Bangladesh smartly reached the final of the six-nation SAFF U-15 Championship with all-win record eliminating neighbour India by 4-2 goals in tie-breaker at ANFA Complex in Lalitpur, Nepal Thursday morning.
Earlier, the first semifinal match between two teams was locked in 1-1 goals in the stipulated period.Bangladesh will play final on Saturday (Nov 3) at 2:45 pm (Bangladesh time) against the winners of Pakistan and Nepal, who will meet each other in the 2nd semifinal Thursday afternoon.
Bangladesh qualified for the final of the SAFF U-15 Championship for the first time after losing to hosts Nepal in the semifinal in 2017.
However, Bangladesh emerged champions in the SAFF U-16 Championship held in Sylhet in 015.In the day’s crucial first semifinal, Patre Harsh Shailesh put India ahead in the 17th minute by a long distance shot about 35 yards, amid huge celebration of Indian players and their fans (1-0).
When the match was almost heading for Indian victory, then tournament’s leading scorer Nihad Jaman Ucchash scored the match equalizer in the 3rd minute of the stoppage time from a penalty (1-1) leading the match towards tie breaker.
In the penalty shootout, Bangladesh scored four against India’s two goals.With the day’s goal, Nihad Jaman of Bangladesh further consolidated his position in the scorer list making five goals.
Earlier, Bangladesh emerged Group A champions with all-win record to reach the semifinals beating hosts Nepal by 2-1 goals in the last group match after crushing the Maldives by 9-0 goals in the first match, featuring a hat-trick by Nihad Jaman while Nepal outplayed the Maldives 4-0 in their first appearance on Thursday last.
After the group stages, Bangladesh (Group A) and Pakistan (Group B) clinched the group crown with all-win run to qualify for the semifinals securing full six points from straight two encounters while Nepal (Group A) and India (Group B) finished group runners-up to reach the semifinals, collecting three points from two matches.
On the other hand, Pakistan clinched Group B title beating India by 2-1 goals and Bhutan by 4-0 goals while India finished Group B runners-up beating Bhutan by 4-0 goals.