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India beat Thailand to finish 3rd in Kings Cup

India registered a narrow 1-0 win over Thailand to hand Igor Stimac his first win as the head coach of the Blue Tigers, courtesy of an Anirudh Thapa strike in the 17th minute.

Stimac hinted in his pre-match press conference that he would like to give an opportunity to every member of the squad. Hence, the Croatian made eight changes to the starting XI that went down 3-1 against Curacao.

Amrinder Singh started under the sticks with Rahul Bheke, Adil Khan, Sandesh Jhingan, Subashish Bose forming a four-man backline. Vinit Rai slotted in as a defensive screener with Amarjit Singh having the license to move freely.

Farukh Choudhary and Raynier Fernandes manned the flanks while Anirudh Thapa took up the role of an attacking midfielder. Balwant Singh started as a sole striker upfront, making a comeback in national colours after he was left unused by former manager Stephen Constantine during the AFC Asian Cup.

India started dominating proceedings right from the first whistle. Instead of resorting to long balls Stimac directed his boys to keep the ball on the ground and maintain possession.

India will return to action on July 7 in the Intercontinental Cup which will be hosted at the TranStadia Arena in Ahmedabad.

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