CommBank Junior Matildas clinch spot in AFF U18 Women’s Championship 2022 semi-finals with a win over Malaysia

After opening with a 4-0 victory over the Philippines, the CommBank Junior Matildas  followed up with an 8-0 win against Malaysia last night, securing a spot in the semi-finals of the AFF U18 Women’s Championship 2022.

Australia remains at the top of Group B after their second game, with Jonti Fisher, Ella O’Grady x 2, Isabella Accardo, Daisy Brown x2, Sienna Saveska and Ella Abdul Massih all finding the back of the net in the 8-0 win. 

With a completely new starting line-up, Charlie Gibson captained the side in her Junior Matildas debut. 

Head Coach Rae Dower spoke about the victory after her side's second match of the tournament.

"We're thrilled to get another dominant win under our belts and successfully qualify through to the semi-finals of the tournament.  Such is the depth of this team that we were able to start with a completely different Starting 11," she said.

"Every one of our outfield players and two of our four goalkeepers have now made their international debuts and the girls were bursting with pride with more than a few tears on display

"Up against a committed Malaysian team, the girls were able to settle into the match after getting rid of the early expected nerves that come with a changed line-up and so many debutants," she continued.

Dower also spoke about the quality she saw on display during their second game of the tournament.  

"There were some quality individual performances with four goals scored in each half. Our creative combination play was again a hallmark of creating the number of chances that we did.

"We didn't take our foot off the pedal and kept pushing right until the end with two goals scored in injury time. Another clean sheet made for a dominant performance all round." 

When asked about how she found the team is gelling after now having two matches under their belts after three years away from international competition, Dower explained that the team is demonstrating a desire to be better in every match. 

"It goes to show the mentality of the group.  They want to be better with each match and we know as a team that we still have plenty of improvement to come off the back of the first two games. We're looking forward to playing Myanmar on Friday."

Australia's final match of the AFF U18 Women’s Championship 2022 group stage before heading to the semi-finals will see them take on Myanmar on Friday night, with both teams already securing a spot in the semi-finals with six points.

AFF U18 Women’s Championship 2022 – Match Schedule (Australia)

Australia U18 v Myanmar U18
Date: Friday, 29 July 2022
Venue: Athletic Field, Palembang, Indonesia
Kick-off: 3.30pm (local); 6.30pm AEST

Semi-Finals: Tuesday, 2 August 2022
Finals: Thursday, 4 August 2022