The opening round of matches in the 2022-23 Hero Indian Women’s League drew to an end with a thumping 6-0 victory for Sethu FC over Churchill Brothers FC at the Shahibaug Police Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday.
In the Madurai side, containing a host of Indian youth internationals, Kajol Dsouza shone the most with four goals in the first half.
Sunita Munda and Kenyan forward Ivy Faith Atieno added two more to wrap up a solid win for Sethu, which took them to joint-top of the Group B table alongside Odisha FC, who also won 6-0 against CRPF FC on Thursday.
Group A saw defending champions Gokulam Kerala get off to the perfect start with an 8-2 drubbing of East Bengal FC. All in all, there were 35 goals in the first eight matches of the new IWL season.
Gokulam Kerala, who won last year’s title with 11 wins out of 11, had a whirlwind of a start in this year’s competition, going 3-0 up after just seven minutes against Calcutta Women’s Football League Champions East Bengal.
While Rimpa Haldar and Tulsi Hembram did pull two back for the Red and Golds, there was no stopping Gokulam’s Nepali forward Sabitra Bhandari, who netted five goals.
The other big favourites Odisha FC had a seamless IWL debut, winning 6-0 against CRPF FC. After having signed plenty of big Indian names and a couple of foreign players, the Odisha Women’s League champions were excellent as expected by many.
But what would’ve pleased head coach Crispin Chettri the most is the fact that his side’s six goals were scored by six different players.
Kerala Women’s League Champions Lords FA also had the perfect debut. The Kochi side won 4-0 against fellow debutants Celtic Queens FC from Puducherry, thanks to a second-half hat-trick from Philippines international midfielder Camille Rodriguez.