Australia 3, Equatorial Guinea 2

Australia kept alive its chances to reach the quarterfinals of

the Women’s World Cup by beating Equatorial Guinea 3-2 on Sunday in

a game that will be remembered for a penalty that wasn’t

called.

Australia’s Leena Khamis, who scored the first goal, hit the

post in the 16th minute. As the ball bounced back, Equatorial

Guinea defender Bruna grabbed it with both hands, held it, then

casually dropped it again. Australians threw out their arms in

amazement when Hungarian referee Gyoengyi Gaal failed to call a

penalty.

Anonman scored in the 21st minute for Equatorial Guinea, before

Australia took the lead for good with two goals early in the second

half by Emily Van Egmond and Lisa De Vanna.

Anonman, as on her first goal, stole the ball from Servet

Uzunlar to score, pulling Equatorial Guinea within one in the 83rd

minute.

Australia held on, and the penalty incident had no impact on the

final result.

It left Equatorial Guinea with two losses and on the brink of

elimination. Australia is in better shape for a quarterfinal spot

after an opening loss to Brazil. Norway plays Brazil for the lead

in Group D later Sunday.

Australia got off to a fast start when Khamis pounced on a

rebound goalie Miriam should have held and scored in the eighth

minute.

Early in the second half with the score tied, Khamis set up Van

Egmond to score from about 10 yards out with a blistering volley in

the 48th. As the inexperienced African team sought to regroup, De

Vanna gave her team a cushion, running onto a deep pass from

Collette McCallum and slipping it past the out-of-position

Miriam.

Equatorial Guinea, ranked 61st and the biggest outsider in the

tournament, found it tough to switch from its defensive posture and

attack to get back into the game. Anonman was the leading force

and, after getting her nation its first two World Cup goals, she

almost earned it a first World Cup point as well.

Australia now plays Norway in a decisive game Wednesday.