Asian Games: Indonesia beats Maldives 6-0 in women’s soccer preliminary
Safrin La Batu
The Jakarta Post
Indonesia’s women’s team claimed a 6-0 victory over the Maldives in their Group A opening soccer match at the Asian Games on Thursday at the Sriwijaya Stadium in Palembang, South Sumatra.
Striker Mayang ZP and midfielder Zahra Muzdalifah each chipped in with two goals. Mayang scored her goals in the 15th and 55th minutes, while Zahra bagged hers in the 10th and 72nd.
Midfielder Yudith Herlina Sada scored in the 30th minute and defender Jessela Arifya Sari bagged a goal in the 61st just two minutes after she took to the pitch to replace fellow midfielder Dhanielle Daphne.
“This is history in the making because this is the first time we have won,” Zahra said after the game
Indonesia set up the female national soccer team just three years ago and coach Satia Bagda Ijatna said it was hard to improve the players’ skills.
“Even finding players was a challenge,” Satia added.
With a 4-4-2 formation, Indonesia put emphasis on defence, but managed to bombard the Maldives with attack after attack to dominate the game.
Mayang played a significant role in Indonesia’s victory. Her fluid movements allowed her to serve as a striker, hence her two goals, and she also strengthened the defense whenever the opposition counterattacked.
The Maldives made several forays into the home team’s half but these attacks were quickly snuffed out before reaching Indonesia goalkeeper Norffince Boma.
“After the game today, it will be easier in the next game,” coach Satia said.
Group A also includes South Korea and Chinese Taipei.
“I think Chinese Taipei and South Korea are good teams. My strategy for those two teams is to retreat then counterattack,” Satia said.
Indonesia will meet Chinese Taipei on Sunday and South Korea two days later. (yan)
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