for this game

Brazil holds off Australia to win Group D opener

Jun 29, 2011 - 7:59 PM Monchengladbach, Germany (Sports Network) - A goal from Rosana in the 54th minute was enough to lead Brazil to a 1-0 win over Australia in Group D play at the Women's World Cup on Wednesday.

Considered to be among the tournament favorites, Brazil struggled to get hold of the game in the first half before picking up its play over the second 45 minutes to claim the win.

The victory allows Brazil to join Norway at the top of the group after the Norwegians posted a 1-0 win over Equatorial Guinea earlier in the day.

"Both sides really went at it and there was a lot of attacking," Australia coach Tom Sermanni said. "I'm a little disappointed because we had our opportunities and didn't take them. We wanted to take the game to Brazil, to attack them and show that we can compete with the best sides in the world. Tactically and technically Brazil are one of those teams, so in that respect I'm happy."

Australia produced the first good chance of the match in the 23rd minute when Kyah Simon got into the penalty area on the left and smacked a left-footed shot toward the near post that forced an acrobatic save from Brazil goalkeeper Andreia.

The first chance for Brazil arrived a few minutes later with Christiane scuffing a shot from 16 yards that fell to Rosana, who lifted her effort over the crossbar from close range.

Christiane then wasted another good chance following a quality build up as she missed the target from inside the area with a first-time shot.

Marta had a relatively quiet day for Brazil, and it was Christiane that produced the one moment of brilliance that the Brazilians needed when she juggled the ball between two defenders and nodded it into the area for Rosana, who finished emphatically with a well-struck left-footed shot.

Australia hardly managed to threaten Andreia's net in the second half, but Lisa De Vanna had a great opportunity to equalize three minutes from time.

She tracked down a long ball from Collette McCallum in behind the Brazil defense, but with only Andreia to beat, she lifted her shot over the net with the keeper charging off her line.

"We knew it was going to be a tricky game but Brazil showed their fighting spirit and that's why we won," said Rosana. "The team fought really hard and that helped us impose ourselves."

The Matildas will try to rebound from the loss on July 3 against Equatorial Guinea, while Brazil faces off against Norway with the winner taking control of the group.