Defender Cheryl Salisbury scored in extra time to give Australia a 2-2 draw Thursday that broke Canada’s heart at the FIFA women’s World Cup.
The tie knocked Canada out of the first round of the tournament and sent Australia onto the quarter-finals.
“It was just a roller coaster,” said captain Christine Sinclair, who scored to give Canada a 2-1 lead in the 85th minute. “To go from thinking you are moving on to the ultimate low, knowing you are going home, it’s hard.”
It looked like Sinclair’s header late in the game would give Canada the win it needed over Australia. But in the second minute of extra time, Australia’s Lisa De Vanna broke down the Canadian wing. Aware of De Vanna’s speed, the Canadian defence pounced on her.
De Vanna spotted an unmarked Salisbury and fed her a perfect pass. “When that ball came across it was just sitting there in front of me,” said Salisbury. “It just seemed so slow and calm. Then the place erupted. It was an awesome feeling.”
Melissa Tancredi scored Canada’s other goal just 32 seconds into the game.
“I think the first half for my team was a little bit influenced by the early goal. A little too early we started to defend the 1-0 lead.”
Canada finished fourth at the 2003 World Cup.