The quarterfinals line-up of the Indian Women’s League 2023 was completed on Saturday, when the last set of group stage matches were held.
The quarterfinals start on Tuesday, with Kickstart FC taking on HOPS FC, followed by matches between Sports Odisha and Eastern Sporting Union, Sethu Madurai FC playing East Bengal, and defending champions Gokulam Kerala facing Odisha FC.
On Saturday evening, Sethu Madurai FC finished on the top of Group B despite being held to a goalless draw by Odisha FC at the TransStadia. While Sethu FC ended with 17 points, Odisha came third with 16 points, behind Kickstart who had the same points tally but a better goal difference. Odisha FC needed a win to climb to the top of the group.
Eastern Sporting and Kickstart through
Former champions Eastern Sporting Union wiped off a two-goal deficit to win 3-2 against Lords FA Kochi at the Shahibaug Police Stadium.
Lords FA Kochi went 2-0 up in the first 20 minutes when Arya More scored in the 15th and 20th minute. Chandam Anjali Devi reduced the margin in the 23rd minute. Two more goals from Heirangkhongjam Linda in the 25th minute and Lhingneilam Kipgen in the 33rd minute gave Eastern Sporting Union full points.
With this win, Eastern Sporting Union finished the group stage with 15 points from seven matches.
Later at the same venue, Kickstart FC showed no mercy for a hapless Central Reserve Police Force football club, winning 9-0.
Having already made the quarter-finals, the Karnataka side led by five goals at half-time and pumped in four more after the change of ends. While Nepal recruit Saru Limbu and Laishram Bibicha Devi notched up a brace each, Sushmita Lepcha, Astam Oraon, Dalima Chibber and Laishram Rejiya Devi scored one each. An own goal by Tanu completed CRPF’s misery as they finished with seven points.
Meanwhile, Celtic Queens FC finally had something to cheer about when they registered their first victory in their concluding Group A match at the TransStadia. Their 2-1 win over Churchill Brothers came with goals by Aleena Tony and Mangpineng Khongsai. For the losers, Pushpa Parab was the scorer. Both Celtic Queens and Churchill are out of the tournament, having finished sixth and eighth, respectively.