To'abaita Authority for Research & Development (TARD)

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

PNG hit Solomons for six in opener of OFC womens qualifier in Lae

Solomon Islands national womens soccer team could not hold up the mights of Papua New Guinea as they were rattled by a 6-1 loss in the second match of the OFC world cup qualifiers in Lae yesterday.

In what is stamped as a proof of the "under-dog" tag that Solomon Islands carry, chances of keeping the scoreline intact was further tarnished with an own goal by Audrey Galo and a missed penalty from skipper Diane Justus.

During the match Papua New Guinea bombarded the Solomons goalmouth with a series of telling crosses that left the overworked Solomon Islands defence struggling to cope.

For the Solomon Islands defender Brenda Masae turned in a combative performance alongside fellow stopper Audry Jack but the lack of a proper preparation programme told on the team as the game progressed. Prudence Fula scored for the Solomon Islands to give her team some hope to bring the scoreline to 2-1 in favour of PNG, but an own goal from Audry Galo within seconds of the restart deflated the Solomons. Solomon Islands afternoon of woe was compounded when skipper Diane Justus slammed a penalty wide late in the second half.

Meanwhile, Solomon Islands coach Noel Wagapu was philosophical in defeat by admiting that the tournament is a big learning curve for his team. He also added that the Solomons team has had to struggle against a range of obstacles - the conditions, inadequate preparation and the recent tsunami.

Today is a rest day and Solomons second game will be tomorrow against the fiery New Zealanders who have also hammared a 6-1 scoreline against a hapless Tonga side in yesterday's first match.

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