Youngest in Asian Cup, India's Shilky keen to learn for future
At 16 years and 2 months, Indian defender Shilky Devi is the youngest player in the upcoming AFC Women’s Asian Cup and the teenager feels the experience of playing with the senior team will hold her in good stead at the FIFA U-17 World Cup.
“I am playing with so many senior players here and this will definitely help me going into the U-17 World Cup.
“I hope to pass on this knowledge and experiences to my teammates at the U-17 level and we can only learn from this. This experience will definitely help me going forward,'' she added.
Other than Shilky, who has already made her senior debut against Brazil last year, the Indian side has three players from the U-19 national team – Priyangka Devi, Sumati Kumari, and Mariyammal Balamurugan.
“To make the jump to the senior level, you have to work harder, not just on the pitch, but off it as well. We see the seniors maintaining so much discipline just to get that extra yard on the pitch, and that really rubs off on us. Every day is a learning experience for me here,” Shilky said.
“Many had told me that I should concentrate on studies instead of football, early on, including my mother. But my father always supported me. He loves to watch me play football,” Shilky said.
“Personally, I prefer playing as a defender more than as a striker, ever since I learned how to play in this position. I can see the entire game in front of me, and can help organize my team and influence the match from defence quite a lot,” she added.
India start their AFC campaign on January 20 against Iran.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)