Kennedy: Westfield Matildas always had faith in rescue act
A steely-eyed Alanna Kennedy says the Westfield Matildas' unshakeable belief was behind her AFC Women's Asian Cup-saving equaliser in the eventual shootout victory over Thailand.
Kennedy rescued her side from the brink of a semi-final exit with a thumping 91st-minute header that forced extra-time at King Abdullah II Stadium.
And with scores still locked at 2-2 after an additional 30 minutes, Australia overcame two spot-kick misses to prevail 3-1 on penalties and advance to Saturday morning's (AEST) final.
"There was no way the ball wasn't going in the back of the net," Kennedy told Fox Sports of her header.
"I knew we needed to get a goal and it was either going to come from me or someone else.
"We have that belief in ourselves, we're the 'never say die Matildas' and we lived up to that today.
"Penalties is not the way you want to go through but I'm just so stoked we'll be in the final."
The defender was quick to pay tribute to goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold, who rebounded from a tough night in goal to make the difference with three saves in the shootout.
"Mackenzie is one of the best penalty-savers I know," Kennedy said.
"We all had confidence in her and knew she would do the job.
"Things happen during the game but it's players like these in our team that step up in big moments and she did that."