The Indian football team weren’t playing in front of a home crowd and neither were they the favourites, but a massive number of fans came out to support the Men in Blue in their FIFA World qualifier match against reigning Asian champions Qatar in Doha on Tuesday, 10 September.
Missing their skipper Sunil Chhettri, a 103-ranked India put up a gritty show to hold Qatar – ranked 62 in the world – in a goal-less draw.
Indian goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, who also wore the captain's armband, was the star as he single-handedly stopped the Qataris from scoring any goal in the Group E match.
Post the draw, the spectators at Doha's Jassim Bin Hamad stadium joined the Men in Blue in their viking clap celebration amid loud cheers.
India, who had suffered a heartbreaking 1-2 loss to Oman in their opening match on 5 September in Guwahati, now have one point from two matches while Qatar have four points as they had beaten Afghanistan 6-0 in their first match in Doha.
The two sides had played just one official senior match before Tuesday and Qatar had won 6-0 in September 2007 in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers.
India next play Bangladesh on 15 October in Kolkata.
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