Good Sports: INDIA’S FIRST FEMALE PRO SOCCER PLAYER
Ngangom Bala Devi, 30, has become the first Indian woman to play soccer professionally after signing an 18-month contract with Scottish club Rangers FC.
The Manipur-born Devi, the leading scorer on India’s national team, was also the top scorer in the Indian Women’s League over the past two seasons. She scored 26 goals for Manipur Police Sports Club in 2017–18, and 12 goals for KRYPHSA Football Club the previous year.
A trial stint with Rangers FC in November led to her professional contract. It’s the culmination of a long journey for Devi, who has been kicking balls since she was a little girl, inspired by her soccer-playing father.
“I really liked the sport,” she told BBC News. “I used to play with local boys every day. And I used to beat them!”
Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.
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