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SINGAPORE – National women’s football team head coach K. Balagumaran on Thursday (June 28) announced his 23-player squad for the upcoming Asean Football Federation (AFF) Women’s Championship.

The ninth edition of the tournament is held in Palembang, Indonesia and will start on Saturday until July 13.

The squad features three players from the Under-19 national team – Afiqah Omar, Syazwani Ruzi, Umairah Hamdan – and 24-year-old Priscilla Tan who is playing in Australia’s National Premier League Women’s side Eastern Suburbs FC.

Singapore are in Group B, alongside 2016 runners-up Vietnam, Myanmar, Philippines and Indonesia. The Lionesses start their campaign on Sunday against the host Indonesia.

The Republic finished bottom of their group two years ago, with zero points. They lost all three group matches to Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines, did not score a goal and conceded 24.

Balagumaran said: “As compared to last year, we have seen vast improvements in the team. The squad also recorded some credible results during our training camp in Vietnam and a 2-0 win over Maldives in March this year.

“We are in a tough group; it will not be easy facing Vietnam who were the runners-up in the last edition of the competition, and Myanmar who placed third. But we will be looking to give the teams a good fight and to close the gap between us and our neighbouring countries.”

Thailand won the previous edition in 2016, which was also a record third title for them. They beat Vietnam 6-5 on penalties.

Singapore squad:

Goalkeepers

Pamela Kong, Noor Kusumawati, Nur Shahira.

Defenders

Fatin Aqillah, Nur Izyani, Nur Shaahidah, Nur Syazwani, Nur Umairah, Angelyn Pang, Siti Rosnani, Suria Priya.

Midfielders

Rochelle Chan, Joey Cheng, Stephanie Gigette Dominguez, Ho Hui Xin, Lim Li Xian, Nur Afiqah, Nur Emilia Natasha, Nur Farhanah, Ernie Sulastri.

Forwards:

Nur Izzati, Priscilla Tan, Sitianiwati Rosielin.

Fixtures:

July 1

Singapore vs Indonesia, 8pm (Singapore time)

July 3

vs Philippines, 8pm

July 5

vs Vietnam, 5pm

July 7

vs Myanmar, 5pm

*All matches at the Jaka Baring Stadium in Palembang, Indonesia

HT:straitstimes

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