17th Pacific Games | Kulas fall at final hurdle

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The Team Fiji women’s football side after the women’s football final on Friday. Picture: MELI LADDPETER

THE Fiji women’s football side settled for silver yesterday after going down to Papua New Guinea 4-1 during the final at the Main Stadium in Honiara on Friday evening.

Head coach Angelin Chua said their ambition for the games was winning a gold medal, which has never been achieved in the history of women’s football in the country.

“That was our goal coming to the Pacific Games, but everything doesn’t always go to plan,” Chua said.

Despite the loss, the side created history by being the first Fiji women’s football side to win silver at the Pacific Games since the inclusion of women’s football at the games in 2003.

“We didn’t make use of the chances provided to us throughout the match, and that is what cost us the gold medal,” Chua said.

“I think the girls played well, but we didn’t take advantage of all our scoring opportunities throughout the match.”

While Chua says the loss was bitter, there was much to learn which the team would consider as they prepare for the Olympic Qualifiers.

“Yes, the loss is a hard one to swallow, but we have set our mind on the Olympic Qualifiers which starts next year. So we will have a few weeks break before our side starts preparing for the Olympic Qualifiers.

“We have been placed in the same pool as PNG, so we will be preparing for that tournament.” Chua gave credit to the girls for their hard work and sacrifices in the lead-up to the Pacific Games.

“Hats off to the girls for their hard work and sacrifices in the past few months ahead of the Pacific Games. I am happy for what they have been able to achieve, and I know that we will come back stronger in the next Pacific Games.”