The fifth edition of SAFF Champipnship gold cup was hosted by Bangladesh from
10 January to 20 January in 2003. All matches were played in a host city. Bhitan entered as a new team in that year’s tournament. Total 16 matches were played where 39 goals were possible as Bhutan was the most goal conceder. (2.44 per match)
Top scorer was Sarfraz Rasool (4 goals) of Pakistan.
Nepal was drawn in group B along with host Bangladesh, Maldives and Bhutan. Group A consisted of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. Nepal finished third in the group with just a win against Bhutan and losing other both games. Therefore, was out of the championship from the group stage without entering semi final. Nepal lost 1-0 to Bangladesh, won 2-0 against Bhutan and lost 2-3 against the Maldives. Nirajan Rayamajhi scored two goals in that tournament.
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2003 SAFF cup was won by Bangladesh after beating Maldives 5-3 in penalties after the match ended at 1-1 draw.