“Palestine is a beautiful place and we are overwhelmed by such warm reception. We hope to play good football here and qualify for the Finals. We had two decent games in Bahrain and the girls are motivated. It is a tough Group, one that can be called the Group of Death. We have to put our best foot forward. It is serious business from here on,” National Coach Anadi Barua told reporters here.
“This is the most important tournament for us. If we play to our potential we can definitely be that one Team to progress to the next level,” India Captain Tuli Goon opined.
Midfielder Amoolya Kamal added: “I feel o proud. We are greeted wonderfully here. Palestine seems a lovely place. At the same time I also feel responsible. The country is pinning their hopes on us. We have to do it for them. This is the most important tournament for us. The wins against Bahrain helped and we are looking forward to carry forward the momentum.”
India open their account against Myanmar on Tuesday followed by Chinese Taipei on Thursday (May 23) and the hosts Palestine on Saturday (May 25).
India are in Group D. The 23-member Squad:
GOALKEEPERS: Okram Roshini Devi, Tikina Samal, Usha Rani Das
DEFENDERS: Ashem Romi Devi, Loitongbam Ashalata Devi, Suprava Samal, Gurumayum Radharani Devi, Tuli Goon, Lako Phuti Bhutia, Ansha
MIDFIELDERS: Yumnam Kamala Devi, Yumlembam Premi Devi, Supriya Routray, Amoolya Kamal, Dangmei Grace, Oinam Bembem Devi, Sasmita Malik, Paromita Sit
FORWARDS: Irom Prameshwori Devi, Salam Rinaroy Devi, Jyoti Ann Burrett, Ngangom Bala Devi, Pinky Bompal Magar
COACH: Anadi Barua, ASSISTANT COACH: Surmala Chanu, GOALKEEPING COACH: Chitra Gangadharan, PHYSIOTHERAPIST: Dimple Jitesh Maniar.