Papua New Guinea (PNG) women’s football team took another step towards qualification for the knockout stages of the Sol2023 Pacific Games thanks to a 3-0 victory over Cook Islands at SIFF Academy on Monday.
PNG captain Ramona Padio scored twice the first half, while Michaelyne Butubu scored her country’s third in the 80th minute, securing PNG’s spot in the knockout stage.
Looking ahead to the business end of the tournament, PNG assistant coach Eric Komeng told the Pacific Games News Service: “I don’t think it’s going to be easy for us, there are going to be some tough games ahead of us, but we’ll take each game at a time”.
He added: “We appreciate our supporters, families and our friends back home for supporting us. And most of all our (PNG Football Association) president being so supportive, and it’s good to have his presence here,” he added.
In Monday’s other women’s match, New Caledonia defeated American Samoa 4-0.
PNG will face New Caledonia in their final pool clash at 7pm on Thursday at SIFF Academy, before heading into the knockout matches next week.
By Binet Naqu and Teddy Kafo, Pacific Games News Service
Note: This story was updated on 21 November to clarify that PNG have not yet qualified for the knockout stages.