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Youngsters working hard to make final cut for Asian Cup, says Dangmei Grace


Indian women’s football team winger Dangmei Grace on Sunday said the youngsters are working hard to make the cut for the upcoming AFC Asian Cup.

There are a number of youngsters present in the ongoing Indian team camp in Kochi. The continental tournament is scheduled to be held in three venues of Maharashtra from January 20 to February 6.

Out of 27 players present in the camp, 13 are under the age of 25, something that has added a lot of energy and impetus to the squad.

“There are plenty of youngsters in the squad, and they are all working really hard to make the final cut for the Asian Cup. We even have a number of really young players, who are also in the U-17s โ€“ Shilky (Devi), Astam (Oraon), Martina (Thokchom), and a few others, who have brought a lot of energy into the squad,” said Dangmei Grace.

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One thing that comes with such a large number of youngsters in the squad is that the more experienced of the lot always pitch in to help them out in different aspects, both on and off the pitch.

“We are always helping each other, whether in practice, or off the pitch. As seniors, we guide the juniors in whatever mistakes they might make,” said the 25-year-old.

“We also encourage and help them take up different responsibilities in various aspects.” With potentially six World Cup 2023 spots up for grabs, in the Asian Cup, India will be looking to give their best shot at making it to the world stage.

“This is the right time to give our best, we will not regret it later. For us, each and every game we will play will be a do-or-die situation. Every game is an opportunity for us,” she said.

“In our group Iran, Chinese Taipei and China are all tough teams, and we will approach the game one at a time.”

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