That’s it for our coverage of today’s game at the AFC Asian Cup. We will be back once again on January 18 for India’s second match of the tournament when they take on Uzbekistan. But there is still plenty of action from Indian sport.

Join Dilip Unnikrishnan, as he brings updates from the Indian women hockey team’s campaign-opener against United States in the Olympic Qualification tournament.

Hockey, Olympic Qualifiers, India vs USA live: Savita Punia and Co begin campaign against the US

This was never going to be an easy match for India. In Australia, the Indians were playing an opponent that had won the continental contest in 2015 and is a regular at the Fifa World Cup.

Australia dominated possession and created chances aplenty. But the Indian defence stayed firm, often through confident tackles and sometimes with a few desperate stabs at the ball.

Eventually it came down to an error by Gurpreet Singh Sandhu that led to the breakthrough, scored by Jackson Irvine. It was followed up by some wonderful work from Australia’s substitutes Riley McGree and Jordan Bos to double the lead and hand the Socceroos the win.

For all their early work in the counter-attack, India’s frontline could not find a way back into the game.

Up next for the Indians will be the match against Uzbekistan, on January 18.


Six minutes of stoppage time

88 min – India 0-2 Australia: McGree and Bos combined once again to nearly extend the Socceroos' lead. Good pass from McGree towards an unmarked Bos on the left. He controlled, and went for a shot but the ball went just wide of the far post.

80 min – India 0-2 Australia: The substitutes for Australia have given the Socceroos a little more pace and creativity in attack. The Indian defence has stood firm however, with Gurpreet Singh Sandhu making a smart save off a free kick.

73 min – India 0-2 Australia: GOAL FOR AUSTRALIA! The substitutes combine to give Australia a two-goal lead. Riley McGree floated down the right flank and effortlessly charged past Apuia. From a tight angle, he played a neat and accurate cross that evaded goalkeeper and defender and came neatly to Jordan Bos to slot home his first goal for the senior national team.

70 min – India 0-1 Australia: Australia's goalkeeper Matthew Ryan has spent most of his time outside his box, given his team's dominance. But his positioning even caught his teammates off guard. A pass back from near the halfline went beyond Ryan and rolled towards the empty net. The goalkeeper did chase, but the ball had enough side-spin to move off target. That would have been a bizarre goal if it did happen. But India would have taken it.

65 min – India 0-1 Australia: For all of their possession, Australia has been lacking in the final third. There could have been at least one more clear-cut goal-scoring opportunity, but the final pass was misplaced.

60 min – India 0-1 Australia: The Indians have not yet managed to create a chance at goal despite going down a goal. Australia has continued to hold most of the possession.

50 min – India 0-1 Australia: GOAL FOR AUSTRALIA! Australia grabbed possession from India barely a few seconds after kickoff and continued to create chances. But the goal eventually came from what really was a non-chance. Martin Boyle's cross from the right had Gurpreet Singh Sandhu come off his line but tamely paw it into the direction of an unmarked Jackson Irvine, who controlled on his chest and shot into the net to put Australia in the lead.


Australia had over 71% possession, had 12 corners to India’s zero, has 12 shots at goal to India’s one. But the scores remained 0-0. India' has had all 11 players in their own half for a majority of the match, but their defence has managed to quell everything Australia could muster in the first half.



45 + 5 min – India 0-0 Australia: Australia wutg a few cleverly made chances right at the end, but India had a good number of players in the box to block the shots.

5 minutes of stoppage time

45 min – India 0-0 Australia: Australia has continued to dominate possession, but they have lacked the bite in the final third.

40 min – India 0-0 Australia: India is putting everything they have into the defence. The latest corner for Australia, Sandesh Jhingan, Rahul Bheke, Nikhil Poojary went in for the header against Kye Rowles. A heavy clash of heads and Jhingan had to get some strapping on his head.

35 min – India 0-0 Australia: The corner counts have gone up for Australia, eight now. The Australian have been knocking on the door and the Indians, courtesy of a mixture of resolute and desperate defending, have kept the clean sheet so far.

30 min – India 0-0 Australia: Rahul Bheke made a crucial interception to what would surely have been a perfect goal-scoring chance for Australia. Moments later Martin Boyle blazed a difficult volley from close range over the bar.

25 min – India 0-0 Australia: All the 10 outfield players from India have been mostly in their own half. There have been a few defensive hiccups, but the Indian defence has just about managed to hold firm in what has otherwise been a disciplined performance.

20 min – India 0-0 Australia: And now Australia let a golden chance go begging. Martin Boyle chased after Gurpreet Singh Sandhu as the Indian goalkeeper tried to clear. But the clearance was weak went straight to an Australian player with Sandhu hopelessly out of position. The defence scrambled together to block angles. Connor Metcalfe got the shot away eventually, but somehow aimed it straight at Sandhu.

15 min – India 0-0 Australia: What a chance for India! It seemed to have been a harmless, hopeful cross from the right with three towering Australian defenders in posistion to deal with the danger. But Harry Souttar mistimed his jump, and Sunil Chhetri darted in but his diving header went wide.

10 min – India 0-0 Australia: India is trying to create chances on the counter-attack as Australia continues to hold most of the possession. The Australians though have steadily started to find their feet, making a few more inroads towards the Indian goal, but the defence has remained solid.

5 min – India 0-0 Australia: As expected, the Australians have dominated possession but the best chance so far has come for India. On the counter attack, Chhangte floated in a beautiful inviting cross from the left which sailed just over Chhetri in the centre and bounced over Manvir Singh on the right flank.


There is history already in this match, before a ball is kicked. Yoshimi Yamashita becomes the first woman to officiate a men’s AFC Asian Cup match.

The teams are out, here come the national anthems.

As we wait for kick-off, here is Dilip Unnikrishnan’s preview of the competition:

Underdogs India prepared to take on toughest assignment under Igor Stimac

Hello and welcome to Scroll’s live coverage of India’s opening match of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 against Australia.

There was big delay and a change in hosts due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but we are finally here. Asia’s most prestigious international competition is upon us. Hosts Qatar started the tournament off with a win against Lebanon yesterday. Today, India begins their campaign against heavyweights Australia.

The Blue Tigers are in Group B along with Australia, Uzbekistan and Syria.

In Qatar, Igor Stimac has assembled a strong Indian team, led by the evergreen Sunil Chhetri. This is a team that has shown its hunger to punch above its weight. They will face their toughest assignment till date now as they face 2015 winners Australia, a team that has been World Cup regulars.

Screenshots via Jio Cinema