Anita Basnet – Journey from Football Enthusiast to Football Star
“Anita Basnet: Rising Above Stigma, Struggles, and Sporting Success in Nepali Women’s Football”
Anita Basnet’s journey from an enamored young girl watching senior players on the football field in Terhathum district to becoming a household name in Nepali women’s football is a tale marked by determination and triumph over societal challenges. In a district where female footballers face stigma, Basnet’s passion for the game encountered hurdles, but unwavering support from her family fueled her ascent.
“My parents never discouraged me from playing football, which was a significant help in the early days,” shared Anita, reflecting on the pivotal role her family played in her pursuit. Despite societal norms, Basnet found success in her district, clinching multiple local tournaments with her club.
Her breakthrough came in 2012 when, ahead of the Sixth National Games, she caught the eye of Prem Shrestha, a football enthusiast and Deputy Superintendent of Police with the Armed Police Force. An invitation to join APF marked a turning point that eventually led to her national team debut in the 2014 SAFF Women’s Championship, where Nepal narrowly fell to India in the final.
Anita Basnet’s Triumphs Beyond Borders: Journey to Glory in the Indian Women’s League and Futsal in Maldives”
Beyond national glory, Basnet has shown her skills internationally, playing futsal in Maldives and contributing to Sethu FC’s triumph in the Indian Women’s League. Anita Basnet’s prowess extended beyond national borders as she graced the Indian Women’s League stage, donning the colours of Sethu FC. In her inaugural season in 2019, Basnet played a pivotal role in propelling Sethu FC to championship glory, leaving an indelible mark on the league. The team’s triumph resonated with Basnet’s exceptional skills and commitment.
In her second stint with Sethu FC, Basnet played a pivotal role in guiding the club to the knockout stage, a testament to her consistent prowess on the field. Unfortunately, their journey came to an end with a 3-0 loss to Gokulam Kerala. Despite the defeat, Basnet’s contributions were undeniable, and her resilience in helping the team reach the knockout stage.
Anita Basnet: First Goal for Nepal Against Iran
Despite individual achievements, she holds her goal for Nepal against Iran in the 2019 Hero Women’s Gold Cup as her proudest moment.
While Nepal has consistently reached the SAFF Women’s Championship final, victories have eluded them against India and Bangladesh. Yet, Basnet remains resolute, expressing her love for the game and the joy it brings. “Football is in my veins. I’ll continue as long as my body allows,” she affirmed.
For Basnet, football is more than a sport—it’s a source of pride and identity. Her parents, beaming with pride, bolster her journey, making her grateful for the recognition. “What more do I need when my parents take pride in their daughter,” she exclaimed with a cheerful giggle.
In the face of societal norms and sporting challenges, Anita Basnet’s football odyssey stands as a testament to passion, familial support, and an unyielding spirit that continues to inspire.