Australia beats Equatorial Guinea 3-2

Australia maintained its chances of reaching the quarterfinals

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

a game which will stand out for an amazing penalty incident.

Australia’s Leena Khamis scored the opener and then hit the post

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

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

casually dropped it again. Australians threw out their arms in

amazement when Hungarian referee Gyoengyi Gaal failed to call a

penalty.

The Africans came back soon afterward when Anonman scored in the

21st minute, before Australia made the difference with two goals

early in the second half through Emily Van Egmond and Lisa De

Vanna.

The African rookies kept it tight till the end when Anonman, as

on her first goal, robbed Servet Uzunlar and used her fine ball

control to pull Equatorial Guinea within one goal 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 while Australia can again dream of a quarterfinal place

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

in Group D later Sunday.

In a bruising encounter, Australia had a dream start when Khamis

pounced on a rebound goalkeeper Miriam should have held and scored

in the 8th.

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

Egmond to score from 10 meters out with a blistering volley in the

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

put the game beyond doubt, 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 got it it a first World Cup point as well.

Australia now plays Norway in a decisive game next

Wednesday.

Lineups:

Australia: Lydia Williams, Kim Carroll, Heather Garriock, Elise

Kellond-Knight, Servet Uzunlar, Emily Van Egmond, Collette McCallum

(Clare Polkinghorne, 78), Sally Shipard (Lisa De Vanna 46), Lauren

Colthorpe, Leena Khamis, Samantha Kerr (Teigen Allen, 69)

Equatorial Guinea: Miriam, Bruna (Laetitia, 83), Dulcia,

Carolina, Ana Cristina, Vania, Diala, Dorine, Anonman, Jumaria

(Sinforosa, 66), Chinasa (Adriana, 57)