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Three new faces in Indian football team for SAFF Cup

May 30, 2008 22:17 IST

Young Manipuri forward Sushil Kumar Singh, defender Anwar Ali and midfielder Kuttimani figure in India's 20-member squad for the June 3-14 SAFF Cup football tournament in Maldives and Sri Lanka.

All the 17 players that featured in India's historic Nehru Cup triumph last August and the subsequent World Cup qualifier in October were retained.

The new trio were part of the playing eleven in the two friendlies against Chinese Taipei on May 24 and 27, which India won 3-0 and drew 2-2 respectively.

Surkumar Singh, Steven Dias and K Ajayan were not considered due to injuries while goalkeeper Sandip Nandy, Clifford Miranda, Tarif Ahmed, Debabrata Roy and Syed Rahim Nabi were not among the players called for the senior national camp.

Karnataka's N S Manju apparently recovered from his injury and found a place in the team.

Sushil Kumar is the only youngster included in the squad from among junior played called for the national camp.

The team, which was drawn in Group A along with hosts Maldives, Nepal and Pakistan, leaves for Maldives from Chennai on Saturday.

They opened campaign against Nepal on June 3.

The team:

Goalkeepers: Subrata Paul, Subhashish Roy Chowdhary.

Defenders: Mahesh Gawli, Gouramangi Singh, Deepak Mondal, N S Manju, Anwar Ali, Sameer Naik.

Midfielders: Steven Dias, Climax Lawrence, N P Pradeep, Bungo Singh, Mehrajuddin Wadoo, Renedy Singh, Kuttimani.

Forwards: Baichung Bhutia (capt), Sunil Chhetri, Manjit Singh, Abhishek Yadav, Sushil Kumar Singh.

Officials:

Chief Coach: Bob Houghton

Asst. Coach: Savio Medeira and Stanley Rozario

Goalkeeping Coach: Marcus Pacheco

Manager: Pradeep Chowdhary.

Match schedule:

June 3: India vs Nepal; Pakistan vs Maldives (in Male)

June 4: Bangladesh vs Bhutan; Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan (in Colombo)

June 5: India vs Pakistan; Maldives vs Nepal (in Male)

June 6: Afghanistan vs Bangladesh; Sri Lanka vs Bhutan(in Colombo)

June 7: Pakistan vs Nepal; India vs Maldives (in Male)

June 8: Afghanistan vs Bhutan; Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh(in Colombo)

June 11: 1st semi-final in Male; 2nd semi-final in Colombo

June 14: Final in Colombo.

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