The Philippine Football Federation (PFF) has released the official list of players seeing action in the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Women’s Championship starting on July 26 at the Mandalarthiri Stadium in Mandalay, Myanmar.
The Filipinas, who will play in Group A of the ninth edition of the regional tournament, is composed of combined local and international-based players.
Leading the pack are goalkeepers Inna Palacios and Patrica Dull together with defenders Natasha Alquiros, Alesa Dolino, Mary Duran, Claire Lim, Hali Long, Monica Manalansan, and Patrica Tomanon.
The midfield of the squad will be fortified by De La Salle University star Sara Castaneda with Sidra Bugsch, Jennizel Cabalan, Krysta De Ramos, Irish Navaja, Hanna Parado, Shelby Salvacion and Camille Wilson.
Veteran striker Heather Cooke, who became instrumental in the 2012 campaign of the team, headlines the frontline of the Philippines and will be joined by forwards Christina Delos Reyes,and Caitlyn Kreutz.
Former Filipina international Letecia Bautista together with assistants Marielle Benitez and Under-14 coach Joyce Landangan will coach the women’s national team while PFF Women’s Football Committee Chairperson Lalaine Sarmiento is the head of delegation and Stallion FC mentor and former national team coach Ernest Nierras is the technical consultant.
The Philippines will start its campaign against defending champion Thailand on the opening day followed by two-time Southeast Asian titleholders Vietnam on July 28 before meeting the Singaporeans in the final preliminary round match on July 30.
Last year, the Filipinas were booted out in the elimination phase with a record of one win and two losses.
JAELLE NEVIN REYES