Pune juggernaut marches on while Raigad win hearts.
Though Pune continued with their goal-scoring spree it was Raigad who won hearts on Day 3.
The 2019 Wifa Inter-District Championship Sub-Junior Girls is hosted by the Western India Football Association (WIFA) and Palghar FA. A clutch of teams from Maharashtra are vying for top-spot in what is essentially a knockout format.
Pune’s 6-1 win against Satara was the highlight of the day. Though Urvi Salunkhe, who starred for Pune in the earlier rounds, was marked out still Zahra Unwala, Radhika Puranik and Purva Gaikwad stepped up and delivered. Satara did their homework but then Unwala, Puranik and Gaikwad proved to be unstoppable.
Pune – 6 (Radhika Puranik (2), Zahra Unwala (2), Purva Gaikwad (2)) beat Satara – 1 (Nikita Bhat (1))
Earlier Nashik cruised to a 4-0 win against Jalna in the first game. Nashik deployed the long-ball strategy to good effect against relatively shorter opponents. Tejaswini Gaikwad and Zenia Gonsalves were the stand-out performers. Jalna were powerless to avoid defeat despite a fighting display. Gaikwad — who scored a brace — was the standout performer.
Nashik – 4 (Tejaswini Gaikwad (2), Zenia Gonsalves (1), Shloka Bhattad (1)) beat Jalna – 0
The third game between Nagpur and Solapur was a test of endurance. Nagpur won 2-0 in the searing heat thanks to goals from Mahak Shaikh and Sneha Vikey. The game was a close affair as both teams battled hard. But then Nagpur had the extra quality to see off Solapur…and the heat. Solapur couldn’t replicate their Day 2 heroics as they went down fighting. As for Nagpur…sterner tests await in the next round.
Nagpur – 5 (Mahak Shaikh (1), Sneha Vikey (1)) beat Jalgaon – 0
The fourth and final game between Palghar and Raigad had an interesting twist. Raigad played with only eight players as four of their girls were away on a school education trip to Aurangabad. Though they lost 3-0 still coach Sujit Amin was pleased as to how his wards battled it out. Jenita Jaison, Arrchie D’souza and Yukta Patil scored for Palghar. But it was Raigad who eventually won our hearts.
Palghar – 3 (Jenita Jaison (1), Arrchie D’souza (1), Yukta Patil (1) beat Raigad — (0)
Team of the day: Pune
Player of the day: Zahra Unwala (Pune)