AFC Asian Cup Qualifier: India beat Kyrgyz Republic courtesy Sunil Chhetri’s lone strike


first_imgSunil-Chhetri led India defeated Kyrgyz Republic 1-0 to go top of the Group A table of the AFC Asian Cup Qualifier with six points and registered their eighth win on the trot on Tuesday.Thanks to a brilliant goal by captain Chhetri in the 69th minute, India scooped the match despite Kyrgyz Republic giving them a hard time.India had a nervous start where goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu came off his line in the 3rd minute and fouled opposition’s Anton Zemlianukhin who has to be stretched off.Despite early pressure by Kyrgystan, India began to find their feet 15 minutes into the game and started looking for spaces in the Kyrgyz defence.Jeje Lalpekhlua, Jackichand Singh and Chhetri all showed their mettle and created various chances but failed to find the net.In the 55th minute, Kyrgyz Republic missed a brilliant chance after their attempt hit the woodwork. It wasn’t only luck because the Indian defence showed excellent spirit and resilience in some close shaves with Kyrgystan. In the 59th minute, Sandesh Jhinghan pulled off a stunning goalline clearance to keep India alive in the match.Soon in the 69th minute, Chhetri collected the ball in his own half, ran through the defenders to pass the ball to Jeje who returned the ball to the captain with a beautiful chip only for India’s leading goalscorer to give a perfect finish to the move.From there on, India kept a compact defence and looked for chances to go forward.In the 91st minute, Robin Singh had a brilliant chance to kill the game as he timed his run perfectly to a clever pass from Chhetri only to send the ball flying over.advertisementWith a crucial save in the 93rd minute by Gurpreet, India capped the game, held their nerves and grabbed those crucial three points.India will next travel to Macau for their third and final group game of the AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers on September 5, though India’s advancement to the next stage is all but done.last_img

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