The Westfield Matildas have arrived in Vietnam with a steely belief that they can defend their AFC Women’s Asian Cup crown.
The Westfield Matildas have arrived in Vietnam with a steely belief that they can defend their AFC Women-s Asian Cup crown.
Australia-s squad was one of the first countries to arrive in Ho Chi Minh City for the tournament which begins on Wednesday.
Alen Stajcic-s team head into the competition as the defending champions and as such will be somewhat the hunted following their success four years ago in China.
Pint sized midfielder Katrina 'Mini' Gorry, who was not part of that winning squad, said the 2014 team was excited to be in Vietnam as they acclimatise to the hot, humid conditions and make the finishing touches to their preparations before their opening game against World Champions Japan.
“The flight was only seven hours and it was good to settle into the hotel and have our first training session,” Gorry said.
On being able to deal with the high humidity and mid thirty degree temperatures the Matildas can expect to face throughout the tournament, Gorry believes the players are physically and mentally in great shape to handle it.
“I-m sure we-ll have a few hard sessions in the next couple of days to prepare us for our first game on Wednesday.”
The 21 year old has started to establish her place in the national team and brings in some hot form of her own as she was Brisbane Roar-s leading scorer in the recent W-League season. Gorry found the back of the net five times for the Roar in 2013/14 and she hopes she can bring this potency into the Asian Cup to help the Westfield Matildas again go deep into the competition.
“I love it (scoring goals). I think I-ve scored more goals this year than I have in my whole career, so hopefully I can score some goals while I-m over here,” Gorry said.
After opening their campaign against Japan, the Westfield Matildas then face Jordan on Friday and host nation Vietnam on Sunday. The top five teams at the end of the tournament will automatically qualify for next year-s World Cup in Canada, and while that is the top of the agenda, Gorry and co will also want to make sure the Asian Cup stays in Australia.
All of the Westfield Matildas games at the AFC Women's Asian Cup 2014 will be shown LIVE and exclusively on Fox Sports.