20 Jan 2016

Sport: Semi finalists found at U17 Women's Football Champs

1:28 pm on 20 January 2016

The semi finalists have been found at the Oceania Under 17 Women's Football Championship in Rarotonga.

Going into the final round of pool matches, every team had a mathematical chance of reaching the final four.

Defending champions New Zealand thrashed Tonga 13-0 to finish top of Group A, while New Caledonia also advanced with a comfortable 5-0 victory against Samoa.

Papua New Guinea finished top of Group B, despite being held to a 2-2 draw against Fiji.

The PNG women's under 17 team, 2016.

The PNG women's under 17 team, 2016. Photo: Oceania Football

Coach Margaret Aka was disappointed with her side's performance.

"It was a frustrating game in many ways for us. We didn't defend as well as we could have and our attack was a little bit off. We had a plan and we didn't stick to it, but I think some of that was down to the weather."

Meanwhile Cook Islands finished on a winning note, with the hosts thumping Vanuatu 5-1 to end their opponents hopes of reaching the knockout rounds.

Midfielder Moeroa Harmon scored a hat-trick inside 36 minutes, followed by goals to Nicola Marurai and Daimzel Rongokea seven minutes each side of half time.

Cook Islands players celebrate Moeroa Harmon's opening goal.

Cook Islands players celebrate Moeroa Harmon's opening goal. Photo: Oceania Football

Coach Tuka Tisam admits even he was surprised by the scoreline and believes the future is bright.

"Every game we're getting better and better. I mean we ended on a victory but we just came up to short, but I'm very proud of the girls. They're a very young team so we've got about seven girls [that will still be eligible] for the next [Oceania Under] 17s [in two years time]".

The semi finals are on Thursday local time with New Zealand taking on Fiji and PNG up against New Caledonia.