CommBank Young Matildas Touch Down in China

The CommBank Young Matildas have touched down in the harbour city of Xiamen ahead of their two-match China International Series in collaboration with the China Football Association, supported by the National Foundation for Australia-China Relations.

The Australian Women’s U-20 National Football Team will play the China U-20 Women’s National Football Team on Sunday 3 December and Wednesday 6 December at the Auxiliary Field of Xiamen Egret Stadium.

Beyond the matches, the series presents a valuable opportunity for the CommBank Young Matildas to experience the city of Xiamen and strengthen people-to-people ties with their Chinese counterparts.

The team will participate in a joint training session at a sports high school in Xiamen, as well as travel to Gulangyu Island, an important historical site located on the estuary of the Chiu-lung River, to learn more about the city’s history.

The Acting Australian Consul-General in Guangzhou, Ms. Sophie Smith, is delighted that the Young Matildas are in China to compete in the two friendly matches.

She said, “The matches provide a wonderful opportunity to share in the growing enthusiasm of women’s football in China and around the world – particularly following the excitement of this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup hosted by Australia and New Zealand.

“We’re really looking forward to Sunday’s match in Xiamen, Fujian province – good luck Young Matildas!”

National Foundation for Australia-China Relations CEO Peter Cai echoed this enthusiasm.

He said, “The Foundation is proud to support the next generation of Matildas heading to China, particularly on the back of the Prime Minister’s recent visit.

“This tour will help build on longstanding links between Australia and China and showcase Australia’s excellence in women’s sport.”

CommBank Young Matildas Head Coach Leah Blayney is excited for the opportunities this series will provide for her young and talented playing group.

“When you take youth players away to different countries, the football side of it is important, but those off-field experiences are just as important.

“The exposure to other cultures and playing against other international teams away from home, really adds to who they are as people and their growth and development as top footballers,” she said.

Blayney also emphasized the importance of these matches in the team’s preparation for the AFC U-20 Women’s Asian Cup in Uzbekistan early next year, and the invaluable international experience this series provides to both regular and new players.

“We’ve certainly got a strong squad and a few regular players have returned, but we’re really excited to see some new faces.

“Grace Johnston comes to mind; she’s been exceptional in the Western Australian NPL and great for Perth Glory, this is her real first opportunity to play international football, so really looking forward to what she’ll bring to the team.”

The team took to the pitch for their first training session on Tuesday afternoon after their 9-hour flight from Sydney. A sunny afternoon in Xiamen with the backdrop of the Auxiliary Stadium was the perfect way to get the series started.

“Whenever the girls come into the national team camp they’re just so excited to be together and reconnect. We’ll continue to build on that throughout the rest of the time we’re here and I’m looking forward to the remainder of our time in China,” Blayney said. 


China v CommBank Young Matildas
Date: Sunday, 3 December 2023
Kick-off: 3.00pm (Local)/ 6.00pm (AEDT)
Venue: Auxiliary Field of Xiamen Egret Stadium, Xiamen
Watch Here

China v CommBank Young Matildas
Date: Wednesday, 6 December 2023
Kick-off: 1.00pm (Local)/ 4.00pm (AEDT)
Venue: Auxiliary Field of Xiamen Egret Stadium, Xiamen
Watch Here