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Wasteful India share spoils with Iran in their AFC Women's Asian Cup opener

India and Iran played out a goalless draw at the DY Patil stadium today (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)
India and Iran played out a goalless draw at the DY Patil stadium today (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)

India started their AFC Women's Asian Cup campaign with a drab draw against the Islamic Republic of Iran. Both teams would have preferred to kick off their campaign with a victory, but it wasn't to be.

The match was off to a balanced start, with both teams taking a measured approach. Iran create a few chances early on, but India took control as the game progressed.

Manisha made some brilliant runs down the left flank but failed to do anything substantial in the final third and the teams went into the break goalless.

The second half started with India upping the ante in attack. India created numerous attacks, mainly down the wings, but failed to convert them.

Iran's goalkeeper Zohreh Koudaei was superb, making some brilliant saves that could even be deemed world class.

Apart from those saves, Pyari Xaxa and Manisha were also guilty of wasting some brilliant chances.

FULL-TIME! ๐Ÿ•›Hosts India ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ start their Women's @afcasiancup 2022 campaign with a 0โƒฃ-0โƒฃ draw against Iran ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ท#INDIRN โš”๏ธ #WAC2022 ๐Ÿ† #BackTheBlue ๐Ÿ’™ #ShePower ๐Ÿ‘ง #BlueTigresses ๐Ÿฏ #IndianFootball โšฝ https://t.co/1atqFMFda4

Dangmei Grace probably missed the chance of the game in the 77th minute. Manisa Panna's cross found Grace, who had a free header that was fisted away from the line by Zohreh Koudaei. The rebound fell to Grace, who placed it wide.

India continued their search for the elusive goal but failed to score as thanks to some poor finishing.

Indumathi failed to get a goal today (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)
Indumathi failed to get a goal today (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)

The quality of finishing will prove to be a worry for Thomas Dennerby with these misses potentially proving to be very costly.

Apart from some fantastic defending, Iran also created a few chances, but Maryam Irandoost's team will be happy to take away a point from a game that they were hanging on to by a thread.

Stats show an utterly one-sided affair

India had 64.1% of the ball possession and managed to take 24 shots during the game, 5 of which were on target. The Blue Tigresses seemed to badly miss Bala Devi's presence up front.

Defender @DalimaChhibber reflects on a game of missed opportunities against Iran but looks at the positives too in the #BlueTigresses ๐Ÿฏ Group ๐Ÿ…ฐ๏ธ opener of the Women's @afcasiancup 2022 โฉ#INDIRN โš”๏ธ #WAC2022 ๐Ÿ† #BackTheBlue ๐Ÿ’™ #ShePower ๐Ÿ‘ง #IndianFootball โšฝ https://t.co/U1FcwN51lv

India take on Chinese Taipei on Sunday

With today's draw, India's hopes of qualification to the next round took a big hit as both Chinese Taipei (who are ranked 39) and China (who are ranked 19) are ranked higher than India and Iran.

Captain Ashalata Devi will need to put up a more inspired performance in the upcoming game (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)
Captain Ashalata Devi will need to put up a more inspired performance in the upcoming game (Image courtesy: AIFF Media)

India's face Chinese Taipei on the 23rd, and Thomas Dennerby will hope his side can bury the ghosts of today's game in exchange for a better performance in front of goal on Sunday.

India's ploy of bypassing the midfield while going forward may come back to bite them in the next couple of games. Anju Tamang's presence in midfield and her deliveries could help the team in the next couple of games.

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Edited by Habil Ahmed Sherule
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