As Sethu and Kickstart draw; Eastern Sporting secures spot in last eight, Odisha FC gains

On May 10, 2023, at the TransStadia, in the Hero Indian Women’s League, Sethu Madurai FC and Kickstart FC played to a scoreless draw in a match for first place in Group B. In addition to ending Sethu’s pristine record thus far, the outcome also maintained Kickstart’s five-game winning streak. However, it came at the expense of losing a seat at the table for the latter.

The match was equally matched throughout, with neither team taking advantage of many opportunities to seize the lead or put the game away. The outcome was especially difficult for Sethu Madurai to accept because they were given far better opportunities but were denied by Maibam Linthoigambi Devi in the Kickstart goal.

Sethu and Kickstart strives

In the 22nd minute, Linthoi was at her best when Kajol Dsouza had an opportunity to score the game’s first goal due to a defensive blunder with a Priyangka Devi cross. The forward has nine goals in the league so far, but a diving Linthoi managed to stop her in her tracks at the last second. Soon after, another outstanding save occurred, this time from an attempt by Apurna Narzary. As Narzary twisted and moved away from her markers, she curled a shot towards the far corner, only to see a diving Linthoi manage to deflect it.

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Laishram Bibicha Devi and Devneta Roy both created opportunities for Kickstart, but they were unable to capitalise on them. Bibicha Devi’s tenacious performance in the Kickstart midfield earned her the Player of the Match honour.

Odisha FC defeated Celtic Queens and moved up to second place in Group B

With their 3-0 victory over Celtic Queens FC at the Shahibaug Police Stadium, Odisha FC took advantage of the draw between Sethu and Kickstart to move up a spot in the standings. With only one round of games remaining, the quarterfinalists from the group have already been determined, but the position achieved could be very important for the draw for the following round.

In the third minute of the game, Faustina Worwornyo scored to give Odisha the lead, and they never looked back.

In the extra period of the first half, Bannya Kabiraj extended their advantage, and in the final seconds of play, S Lynda Kom ended the game. Anju Tamang won Player of the Match for maintaining her composure in the middle of the pitch.

Eastern Sporting seals the quarters spot

At the TransStadia, Eastern Sporting Union defeated CRPF in a close but significant victory. The previous Hero IWL champions were able to secure the victory. Thanks to a goal from Irom Prameshwori Devi in the 52nd minute.

With one group stage match remaining, the victory also ensures them a place in the tournament’s quarterfinals. For her game-winning goal, Prameshwori was also named the Player of the Match.

Churchill Brothers score their first three goals admirably

Churchill Brothers defeated Lords FA Kochi 3-1 to earn their first victory of the year at the Shahibaug Police Stadium. Riya Sharma’s goal two minutes prior to halftime gave Churchill the lead in a fiercely contested battle. However, Kathleen Rodriguez converted a penalty kick inside the first ten minutes of the second half to pull Lords FA even. Her eighth goal of the year made it the third-highest total in the league.

The last 15 minutes of the game made all the difference, though. Churchill’s Saniya added a second goal in the 79th minute. And a third in stoppage time to secure the Goan team’s first victory of the year. The forward’s game-changing performance earned her the title of Player of the Match.

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