By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
The Philippine Women’s National Football Team nipped Iran, 1-0, in the ongoing AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament last November 1, 2023, held in Perth, Australia.
Tahnai Annis proved to be the heroine of the match after delivering team PHL’s only goal of the match during the 19th minute of the tight contest.
The Filipina striker drew first blood and sent in the first and only conversion from both squads after cashing in a short-distanced goal in the penalty area.
With the goal, the Filipinas just secured the second spot in Group A of the tournament with a total of six garnered points.
It was still a 50-50 match despite the Annis goal as Iran came right back with aggressive offensive sets in the remaining duration of the game.
Filipinas’ goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel then stepped up to the challenge and denied Iran’s clean looks that would’ve equalized the match.
Iran kicked off the second half with the same aggression but the Filipinas countered by mixing their defensive sets up to confuse the opposition’s attack.
The Filipinas had two chances to balloon their lead in the second half but Iran’s goalkeeper denied the attempts of Sarina Bolden and Katrina Guillou.
Despite one last push from the Iranians, the Filipinas were able to keep their composure and walk away with the much-needed win.