Matildas keep dream alive

2011-07-03 16:45
Lisa De Vanna (AP)

Bochum - Australia kept their World Cup dream alive with goals from Leena Khamis, Emily Van Egmond and Lisa De Vanna giving them a hard-fought 3-2 Group D win over Equatorial Guinea.

A double from captain Anoniman could not lift the African side who crashed out of the tournament after losing 1-0 to Norway in their opener.

After losing their opening game 1-0 to Brazil, the Matildas needed a win to keep in the running for their second consecutive quarter-finals.

With three points from two games they will have to wait until the final game against Norway on Wednesday to book their quarter-final spot.

Unbeaten sides Brazil and Norway play in Wolfsburg later.

Described as "unpredictable" by coach Tom Sermanni the Australians found it difficult to control the pacy Africans in an action packed first half.

Sydney FC forward Khamis opened for the Matildas after eight minutes.

But there was some controversy in the 16th minute when Khamis hit the post and African defender Bruna caught the ball, dropped it and played on.

Anoniman, who was caught up in a gender row before the tournament, missed a shot on 17 minutes but four minutes later she made no mistake with a spectacular solo run.

The 22-year-old dispossessed tumbling striker Servet Uzunlar to race towards goal beating Australian defender Elise Kellond-Knight with advancing keeper Lydia Williams falling.

Seventeen-year-old Van Egmond had a shot at goal after 24 minutes but it was held by African goalkeeper Miriam, and a Samantha Kerr header from a freekick went just over.

The Australians came out battling after the break with Van Egmond getting her first international goal three minutes later with substitute Lisa De Vanna slotting home a third after 51 minutes.

But the 61st-ranked Africans kept pushing and Anoniman, who plays for German club Jena, slotting home her second after 83 minutes, with the former African champions continued to push for the equaliser until the whistle.

Controversy has surrounded the team ranked 50 places below the Australians in the FIFA rankings.

Forward Jade Boho was suspended by FIFA before the competition began after it was discovered she had represented Spain within the last five years.

Anoniman was at the centre of a gender row but remained in the squad but sisters Salimata and Bilguisa Simpore, accused of being men, were kept off.

Australia play Norway next Wednesday in Leverkusen as Equatorial Guinea challenge Brazil on the same day in Frankfurt.

Read more on:    women's soccer world cup


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