30 footballers selected for SAG

source: myrepublica

KATHMANDU, Dec 19: The All Nepal Football Association (ANFA) named thirty footballers in the second round selection on Saturday to participate in the 11th South Asian Games (SAG) to be held from January 29 to February 9 in Dhaka. SAG´s provision allows three senior players to compete from the U-23 football team from this edition.

Six players exceeding the age group, who were called in the first round selection, have been retained in the second round as well. The senior players include national team´s captain Sagar Thapa, goalkeepers Bikash Malla and Ritesh Thapa, forward Jumanu Rai, midfielder Raju Tamang and Pradeep Maharjan. Maharjan is the star midfielder who was not included in the SAFF Championship team held earlier this month.

There are only three goalkeepers in the team after the 48 footballers of the first round were shortlisted to 30 players. As two goalkeepers exceeding the age limit were selected, the U-23 goalkeeper Rupak Shrestha could not make it through the selection in the second round. The only other goalkeeper of the age group is Kiran Chemjong. Coach Yogambar Suwal hinted that only two goalkeepers will be selected in the final round, which will include one goalkeeper from the age group.

In the defense line, Rohit Chand, Biraj Maharjan, Rabin Shrestha and players who have experience of playing in the national team like Deepak Bhusal and Bikash Singh Chhetri are selected along with Sagar. Noor Raj Kafle and Santosh Gurung are also in the defense line.

Along with Raju and Pradeep, national team´s midfielders Sandeep Rai, Nirajan Khadka, Bhola Silwal, Ranjit Shrestha and Yogesh Shrestha are picked in the selection. Likewise, Jeevan Sinkeman, Dipen Shrestha, Pukar Gahatraj, Laxman Ruchal and Shiva Shrestha, who have international experience in the age group, have also been selected in the second round.

National team´s Jumanu Rai, Anil Gurung, Santosh Sahukhala and Chetan Ghimire as well as Bharat Khawas and Nirajan Malla have been selected for the forward position.

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