Matildas contine World Cup preparations with New Zealand win

The Matildas defeated New Zealand 3-0 today in a practice match played in Coffs Harbour as the team continues preparations for September’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in China.

The Matildas defeated New Zealand 3-0 today in a practice match played in Coffs Harbour as the team continues preparations for September-s FIFA Women-s World Cup in China.

Australia dominated lengthy periods of the match but were unable to break down their trans-Tasman rivals in a scoreless first half at the Novotel Pacific Bay training ground.

Prolific Australian striker Sarah Walsh broke the deadlock soon after the interval scoring a brace of goals within a thirteen minute period. Walsh-s first was a solid angled shot from the right, with the second a close range header after attacking fullback Heather Garriock had fired a fierce long-range shot onto the underside of the crossbar.

Substitute Lana Harch concluded the scoring eight minutes from time with a left footed strike from inside the penalty area that deflected off a New Zealand defender en-route to goal.

“I am largely pleased with the match and we had some good passages of play in a game that was an excellent hit-out against international opposition as we continue our preparations for September,” said Australian coach Tom Sermanni.

Australia will meet New Zealand in a second match on Sunday 22 July (1pm) at the Novotel Pacific Bay training ground, Coffs Harbour.

Match Details

Australia 3 (Sarah Walsh 57-, 70-, Lana Harch 82-) New Zealand 0

Australia Line-Up: Emma Wirkus (GK); Rhian Davies, Kate McShea, Cheryl Salisbury (C), Heather Garriock, Joanne Peters, Collette McCallum, Sally Shipard, Danielle Small (Lana Harch 25-), Caitlin Munoz, Sarah Walsh

The 2007 FIFA Women-s World Cup will feature 16 nations and will be held in the cities of Chengdu, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Tianjin and Wuhan, September 10-30.

Australia will open their campaign at the 2007 FIFA Women-s World Cup against Ghana on September 12 in Hangzhou. The Matildas will then meet world number four ranked team Norway on September 15 in the same city, before the final group match against Canada on September 19 in Chengdu.

The Qantas Matildas squad for the Coffs Harbour camp, July 16-22, is:

Goalkeepers - Melissa Barbieri (Melbourne), Lisa Hartley (Wollongong), Lydia Williams (Canberra), Emma Wirkus (Adelaide)

Defenders - Di Alagich (Sydney), Ellen Beaumont (Brisbane), Louisa Bisbi (Melbourne), Kim Carroll (Brisbane), Rhian Davies (Sydney), Heather Garriock (Sydney), Kate McShea (Brisbane), Clare Polkinghorne (Brisbane), Karla Reuter (Newcastle), Cheryl Salisbury (Newcastle), Thea Slatyer (Sydney)

Midfielders - Lauren Colthorpe (Newcastle), Lana Harch (Brisbane), Collette McCallum (Perth), Amber Neilson (Newcastle), Joanne Peters (Newcastle), Sally Shipard (Canberra), Danielle Small (Sydney)

Forwards - Joanne Burgess (Sydney), Amy Chapman (Canberra), Lisa DeVanna (Perth), Kate Gill (Newcastle), Caitlin Munoz (Canberra), Sarah Walsh (Sydney) (current home city)

TV: SBS TV will broadcast a selection of matches from the 2007 FIFA Women-s World Cup including LIVE coverage of the opening ceremony match, semi-finals, final and ALL Matildas matches.