New Delhi, September 23, 2023: The 62nd Subroto Cup Junior Girls (U-17) Inter School International Football tournament has reached the quarterfinals stage and four exciting matches are on the cards tomorrow which will be played at the Dr. B.R Ambedkar Stadium in the national capital. Five of the eight teams are from the North-Eastern part of the country, which is no surprise given the massive popularity of the game in the region, while one foreign team has also made it through to the knockouts from the group stages, which began on September 19, 2023.
In the first quarterfinal at 8 AM Indian Standard Time (IST), Ananda Purna School of Science, Thoubal, Manipur will face off against former champions Bangladesh Krida Shiksha Prothishthan (BKSP). Former champions G.S.S.S Alakhpura, Bhiwani will face Lohit Dikrong H.S.S, Lakhimpur, Assam in the second quarterfinals at 10 AM IST. Then at 2 PM IST, defending champions St. Patrick’s, Gumla, Jharkhand and Tripura Sports School, Badharghat, Tripura clash in the third quarterfinals and finally, in an all North-East clash, Saiden Secondary School, Ri-Bhoi, Nongpoh, Meghalaya, take on Home Mission School, Aizawl, Mizoram. That game kicking-off at 4 PM IST
Manipur were the winners of Group A while BKSP finished top off the standings in Group B. The team from Bangladesh has won the title three times in a row from 2017-2019. They have scored 23 goals in their group games without conceding with Tanjila Afroz Hira, being their top scorer with six goals. Manipur on the other hand will bank on the formidable striking duo of N. Henarita Devi and L. Nira Chanu, who have scored a whopping 16 and eight goals so far respectively, in the 34 goals that Manipur have scored so far.
Former champions G.S.S.S Alakhpura, Bhiwani, winners back in 2015 and 2016, have had tighter victories in a much more competitive group, defeating two schools from West Bengal enroute to the knockouts. On the other end, their opponents in the second quarter-final from Assam are in top attacking form, having scored 25 goals thus far. Junali Sen has scored ten goals while Doley Gogoi has seven to her name.
The third quarterfinal between defending champions St. Patrick’s, Gumla, Jharkhand and Tripura Sports School, Badharghat, Tripura, also promises a lot of goal scoring action, given the former has the most goals scored so far among all teams in the group stages. Tripura, who have also given a good account of themselves, winning against teams from Delhi, Mizoram and Uttarakhand to top Group E, will have their task cut out against the likes of Alpha Kandulna, who has ten goals for Jharkhand so far.
In Sunday’s final game, winners of Group G, Saiden Secondary School, RI-Bhoi, Nongpoh, Meghalaya face off against Home Mission School, Aizawl, Mizoram, the winners of Group H and who are also representing the National Cadet Corps (NCC). While the former has scored 17 group stage goals, the latter has pumped in 22 past their opponents, but while Meghalaya are yet to concede, Home Mission School, Mizoram have failed to keep a clean sheet in their match against Bihar. It will be an interesting all North-East clash.
The 62nd Subroto Cup will be telecast LIVE on the SportsCast India YouTube channel. You can also catch the Highlights on the Prasar Bharti & AIFF YouTube channels.