Nail-biting matches and surprise results at Women’s World Cup

Four days into the women's World Cup and viewers are already regaled with nail-biting matches. The competitive start to the women’s tournament being played out in Australia and New Zealand focus on three closely contested games where the underdogs displayed remarkable determination against strong tournament contenders.

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The most remarkable performance came from Jamaica, who faced off against women’s soccer powerhouse and favourites France, and achieved an impressive 0-0 draw. Jamaica’s defence held firm, despite France having some close misses and hitting the post. However, the draw came at a cost, as Jamaica’s star player Khadija “Bunny” Shaw received a second yellow card in injury time and will be suspended for their next group game against Panama.

This draw was historic for Jamaica, marking their first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup point.

South Africa, another underdog, was less fortunate as Sweden scored a last-minute goal securing a 2-1 victory. South Africa had initially taken the lead with a goal from Hildah Magaia, but Sweden equalized in the 65th minute through Fridolina Rolfö and clinched the win with a last-gasp header from Amanda Ilestedt. The victory could be significant for Sweden, who were viewed as a dark horse in the tournament.

Another unexpected score saw the Netherlands defeat Portugal 1-0 in Group E, the same group as the United States. Stefanie van der Gragt scored the lone goal with a header in the 13th minute, and the decision was eventually confirmed after a VAR review overturned an initial call for offside.

The standout team of the day was undoubtedly Jamaica, whose players deservedly received recognition for their historic result against France. Ranked 43rd in the world, Jamaica’s achievement of holding 4th-ranked France to a goalless draw was exceptional. Their journey to the World Cup had been challenging, as they had to start a GoFundMe campaign to secure funds due to a lack of support from their country’s soccer federation. Despite facing such disparities, Jamaica’s performance was legendary and inspiring.

Despite the underwhelming ticket sales prior to these tightly contested matches, the favourites to the win – France’s spectacular prowess can be seen in the ad campaign by Orange, the French telecom company.


Whichever way you lean, the usual suspects or the underdogs, to catch the action tune into watch the Women’s World Cup’s next matches:

  • Italy vs. Argentina from Auckland, NZL (2 a.m., FS1)
  • Germany vs. Morocco from Melbourne, Aus. (4:30 a.m., FS1)
  • Brazil vs. Panama from Adelaide, Aus. (7 a.m., FS1)
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