FIFA Women’s World Cup: Nigeria deals stunning blow to Australiatext_fields
Brisbane: Nigeria stunned Australia 3-2 on Thursday to pull off the first major upset of the Women's World Cup, leaving the co-hosts' tournament prospects on shaky ground and the home crowd in disbelief.
After Osinachi Ohale gave Nigeria the lead after the break and Uchenna Kanu had cancelled off Emily van Egmond's opening goal just before halftime, Asisat Oshoala volleyed into an open goal in the 72nd minute to give the Africans a well-deserved victory, Reuters reported.
Alanna Kennedy's header in the tenth minute of stoppage time brought Australia's lead to one goal, but Nigeria survived the final seconds to earn one of their best victories at the world championship.
The victory at Lang Park in front of a sizable crowd tied Nigeria and Canada for first place in Group B with four points each, but Nigeria had more goals scored. On Monday, the 11-time African champions take on the group's other eliminated team, Ireland.
The Matildas must defeat Olympic champions Canada, who were reduced to a 0-0 draw by Nigeria in their tournament debut, in order to guarantee their place in the round of 16 when they had considered themselves to be one of the main title contenders.
Australia's front line had the absence of talismanic striker Sam Kerr and attacker Mary Fowler due to injury. Although they harassed, Nigeria's goal, they saw a number of chances fly wide and over the bar in both halve.