After two weeks in the AFC Women’s Asia Cup, the stage is set. It comes down to two teams, China and South Korea. The tournament held took place in India. A total of 12 teams participated in the contest; this was the first time. This tournament saw the teams come with a positive mindset, integrity, winning approach. All the women in the team played with full energy to represent their country. Few teams created history in the tournament, and some made history by making their debut. The tournament had a simple format; Group stage, Knock-out stages (quarter-finals and semi-finals) and the Finals.
As of today, there have been 22 matches played, and the ladies scored a total of 93 goals. The current top scorer in the tournament is the Australian and Chelsea Striker Sam Kerr with seven goals. Four women are tied with five goals in the second position, Australian Emily van Egmond, Chinese Wang Shanshan and Wang Shuang and Japnese Riko Ueki.
AFC Women’s Asia Cup was also played for FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 qualification. As Australia is the host nation, it saw an automatic qualification, so along with them, five more teams qualified for the World Cup. The top Four teams qualify and are now known to everyone, China, South Korea, the Philippines, Japan. For the 5th spot, there is a playoffs round that is being played simultaneously, and the teams competing in the playoffs are Vietnam, Chinese Taipei and Thailand.
CHINA and SOUTH KOREA’s Tournament
China was in group A where it went head to head with Chinese Taipei, Iran and India. The match with India was cancelled as the Indian team went down with COVID-19 positive cases. They played with Chinese Taipei and Iran, defeated Chinese Taipei 4-0 in their opening game and defeated Iran 7-0 in their second game; they topped their group. Qualifying for the quarterfinals, they played Vietnam and beat them 3-1. They then played Japan in the semifinals; the game ended 2-2 after extra time, which led to a penalty shootout, and China won the shootout 4-3 and booked their spot in the Finals.
South Korea played in Group C with Japan, Vietnam and Myanmar. In their first game against Vietnam, they won 3-0 comfortably. The second match was played against Myanmar, and they defeated the 2-0. It was a very competitive game with Japan, and it ended 1-1. They finished second with 7 points, equalled Japan, who finished first with a more significant goal difference. In the quarterfinals, they faced the mighty Australians and defeated them 1-0 with a late winner in the 87th minute. In the semifinals, they met the Philippines and defeated 2-0 with ease and booked their spot in the Finals.
CHINA Vs SOUTH KOREA
DY. Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai,
4:30 pm IST