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PWNFT end OQT campaign on a high note

The Philippine Women’s National Football Team came up with a dominant 7-0 victory over Palestine to end the second round of the Olympic Qualifiers, but it was not enough to see them through to the next round.

The Filipinas were banking on a miracle for any chance to advance after the heartbreaking loss to Chinese Taipei three days ago. They needed to win by a large deficit, while Iran had to defeat Chinese Taipei.

Joyce Semacio started proceedings at the Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Stadium with an effortless penalty goal in the 17th minute, becoming the only player to score in all three Philippine matches.

In the 29th minute, Alisha Del Campo’s emphatic strike from close range doubled the scoreline, quickly taking the ball from the net as the Pinays raced for more goals. Two minutes later Eva Madarang went unchallenged in front of goal to bring the tally 3-0 at the half.

At this time, however, Let Dimzon’s charges learned that Chinese Taipei had scored just as much against Iran at the Grand Hamad Stadium, rendering their efforts meaningless.

But the ladies kept on going. Madarang found her brace goal fifteen minutes after restart as she received a fine Sara Castañeda through-ball.

Three minutes later, Semacio’s corner kick found an unmarked Patrice Impelido, who headed the ball into the bottom corner for a fifth goal. A further three minutes and Castañeda was on the board after Madarang’s long throw-in.

Castañeda also capped things off with a penalty stroke in the 70th minute to make it 7 unanswered goals for the Philippines.

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On the other side of town, Iran’s 1-4 loss to Chinese Taipei made it official that the Philippines have been eliminated from the Olympic Qualifiers.

Chinese Taipei will move on to the third round on 9 points after winning all their matches, with the Philippines in second place with 6 points. The Filipinas are left to ponder on what might have been had they not squandered the 2-0 lead they had against them during their clash. Iran also exits on 3 points and Palestine with 0.

Philippines XI: Cavill (GK), Long, Dolino, Tomanon, Bernal (Amita), Impelido (C), Simarago, Madarang (Rodriguez), Del Campo, Castañeda, Semacio (Navaja)

Palestine XI: Othman (GK), Elias, Nassar, Khattab (Nazzal), Alkhatib, Qumseya, Sohgian (C), Khourty (Qatamesh), Khoury, Adawi (Salama), Kanaaneh

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