New Zealand missed a golden opportunity to edge closer to the knockout stages of the Women’s World Cup as the Philippines upset them in Wellington.
It was a famous victory for the Philippines, the first by one of the eight debutants at the tournament, and they celebrated passionately at full-time.
Co-hosts New Zealand shocked Norway on the opening day and knew another victory could have sealed their place in the last 16, but they could not find a breakthrough on a frustrating evening.
Instead, it was the Philippines’ Sarina Bolden who sprinted away in celebration in the 24th minute after heading in Sara Eggesvik’s clipped cross for the country’s first goal at a Women’s World Cup.
Goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel produced heroics in stoppage time, denying New Zealand substitute Grace Jale with an excellent fingertip save as her half-volley was heading towards the bottom corner.
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ALSO, Colombia got their 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup off to the perfect start with victory over South Korea in Sydney.
Catalina Usme put the South Americans ahead from the penalty spot, before teenager Linda Caicedo, 18, doubled the lead thanks to an error from Korean keeper Yoon Young-geul.
That was enough to give Colombia their second ever win at the tournament.
For South Korea, history was made as Casey Phair became the youngest-ever player at a Women’s World Cup.
The forward, aged just 16 years and 26 days, was introduced as a 77th-minute substitute.
The Asian nation, who have now lost all four of their Women’s World Cup opening matches, next face Morocco on 30 July in a must-win Group H match, before Colombia play Germany.
Former winners Norway are fighting to stay in the Women’s World Cup after a draw against Switzerland left them bottom of Group A with one game to go.
After being on the receiving end of a shock defeat by co-hosts New Zealand on the opening day, Hege Riise’s side needed to respond but failed to score for the second straight game.
This was after Caroline Graham Hansen, another huge talent, did not make the starting line-up.
Written by: Debby Eselebor
todayFebruary 23, 2024 12 2
todayFebruary 23, 2024 2 2