Maharashtra U-14 Girls Shine In AIFF Competition

The Maharashtra Under-14 girls finished second in the AIFF National Football festival that was held in Chennai between December 23,2008 and January 1,2009.

The team was managed by Premier India Football Academy (PIFA) director Anjali Shah and was coached by UEFA B licenced coach Mr. Nirvan Shah.

The team lost their opening match 1-0 to tournaments hosts Tamil Nadu, who were also the favourites. But the Maharashtra girls came back strongly in the competition and after holding Tripura to a 1-1 draw, defeated Delhi 6-0, Uttar Pradesh 3-1 and Karnataka 5-0.

The Maharashtra girls, Sakshi Mehta and Aayushi Jain, topped the quiz contest while the entire team won the cultural programme. In the skills test, the Maharastra girls Krishna P. and Rhea N. won the second prize.

This is the first time that a team from Maharashtra has achieved such a high ranking in a national tournament. The team appeared unbeatable and all the other state coaches were full of praise for the team's performance and conduct both on the pitch and off it.

The WIFA shall be organizing a special felicitation ceremony in their honour.

Here is the Maharashtra team list: Kunashni Parikh (GK), Rhea Nongrun (GK), Tavishi Pandey (D), Sakshi Mehta (D), Spenta Daruwala (D), Aayushi Jain (D), Prajkta Sawant (D), Prarthna Mali (D), Leah Poonawala (M), Mahek Mann (M), Natasha Merchant (M), Jacqueline Andrad (M), Natasha Rajpal (F), Marika Menezes (F), Pooja Singam (F), Krisha Parekh (F)

Subhankar Mondal