Asian Cup 2019: India register first win in 55 years

India registered their first victory in the Asian Cup since 1964 on Sunday at Al Nahyan Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

India’s star player Sunil Chhetri, who was playing in his second Asian Cup, scored twice as India defeated Thailand 4-1.

Midfielder Anirudha Thapa and second-half substitute Jeje Lalpekhlua were the other scorers.

Besides winning the match, Chhetri went past Argentine superstar Lionel Messi, who has so far scored 65 goals from 128 matches.

Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is the highest scorer with 85 from 154 matches.

The 34-year-old Chhetri, who was playing his 105th match, also become the highest Indian scorer in the Asian Cup, surpassing former player Inder Singh.

Inder Singh scored twice in the 1964 edition when the country had finished runners-up.

This is India’s fourth participation in the Asian Cup and the win against Thailand was Blue Tigers’ third win in 11 matches.

The country won two matches and lost one in the 1964 edition in Israel, competed by just four countries, then lost three and drawn one in 1984 and were beaten in all their three group matches in 2011.

A draw in either of the two coming matches against UAE and Bahrain could see India through to the knockout round.

The match was watched by the 12 Thai schoolboys rescued from a flooded jungle cave last year after being trapped for more than two weeks.

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