Asia’s finest primed for title challenge

AIPS
Asia’s finest primed for title challenge

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Amman: The continent’s best women’s national teams will begin the chase for AFC Women’s Asian Cup glory on Friday, as West Asia hosts the event for the first time.
After the most competitive qualifying competition in the competition’s history, an exclusive eight teams remain in contention for the title won by Japan in Vietnam four years ago, with the top five teams to qualify for the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019.
Over 15 days, the competition is set to provide the canvas for some the world’s best players, including Australia’s AFC Women’s Player of the Year Sam Kerr, Korea Republic and Chelsea star Ji So-yun and no less than six FIFA Women’s World Cup winners for Japan.
Jordan will play host to the tournament, marking the first edition of the tournament in the continent’s west and a significant milestone in the development of the women’s game in the region.
The hosts will headline the opening day of action when they lock horns with the Philippines at Amman International Stadium, while eight-time winners China PR will the face Thailand in the tournament’s first match.
Reigning champions Japan will begin their title defence against Vietnam on Saturday, with the tournament’s highest ranked team, Australia, to open their campaign against Korea Republic later that night.
THE TEAMS
Group A: CHINA PR, JORDAN, PHILIPPINES, THAILAND
Group B: AUSTRALIA, JAPAN, KOREA REPUBLIC, VIETNAM
OPENING FIXTURES
April 6: CHINA PR v THAILAND, JORDAN v PHILIPPINES
April 7: JAPAN v VIETNAM, AUSTRALIA v KOREA REPUBLIC
THE VENUES
Amman International Stadium: Nine matches including final, 3rd/4th place match and 5th/6th place match.
King Abdullah II Stadium: Eight matches including both semi-finals.

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