Prepare For U-17 World Cup In India By Watching Soccer Match Between India’s Cricket Team And Bollywood Stars
The U-17 World Cup begins on Friday in India and what better way to get amped up for a youth tournament in the world’s second-most populous nation than by watching a soccer match between amateurs. But these aren’t your typical amateurs. One team was made up of Indian cricket stars while the other was comprised of Bollywood stars.
India hosts the 24-team FIFA U-17 World Cup from Oct. 6-28. The United States plays India on Friday.
The amateur match was surprisingly competitive, with heavy tackles flying in and some impressive skills for guys who must focus extensively on careers that don’t involve soccer.
The match ended in a 2-2 draw, a fair result. Bollywood started out strongly but the cricket team, perhaps aided by superior stamina as professional athletes, scored a late equalizer.
The Bollywood stars took the lead on a header in the ninth minute and doubled that advantage with a nice upper-90 goal in the 35th minute.
The cricket team finally got on the board in the 41st minute, capitalizing on a lack of communication by a Bollywood defender and his keeper.
Both teams missed big chances early in the second half, including one shot a cricketer drilled off the crossbar from 20 yards out. In the 81st minute, the cricket team finally found an equalizer.
India and the U.S. are in a group with Colombia and Ghana. Mexico features in Group F with Iraq, Chile and England. Other notable squads include Germany, France, Brazil and Spain, though unlikely winners are common in youth World Cups.
The final will be Oct. 28 at Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata.