OFC U 17 women's championship

Heat comes on as semi-finals await

After navigating their way through pool play New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia and Fiji will fight for a spot in the final of the tournament, where direct qualification to the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup Jordan 2016 awaits for the eventual winner.

New Zealand and Fiji kick off the semis on 21 January at the CIFA Academy from 2pm local time.

New Zealand beat Tonga 13-0 to top Group A and advance to the semi-finals

Hannah Blake opened the scoring for New Zealand in the 5th minute. The second goal came when Maggie Jenkins broke through the Tonga defence and scored.

Jenkins went on to score a hat trick in the first half. Blake scored another and the other goals came from Samantha Tawhuru and Emma main to take New Zealand a 9-0 lead in the first half.

There a few good saves from Mele Akolo.

New Zealand was being pressured hard at the back by Tonga in the second half.

Joy for Tonga while New Zealand win big on Match Day 3

For New Zealand the victory followed an 11-0 defeat of Samoa on Match Day 1, and inches them closer to securing qualification to the semi-finals.

Coach Gareth Turnbull made some changes to his side before the match and was pleased with how they handled the stubborn New Caledonia defensive formation.

“At the start of the game New Caledonia pressed really well which is a credit to them,” Turnbull says.

“We thought we passed well but found it difficult to work in the tight spaces.

Test for top spot in Group A of regional meet

New Caledonia and New Zealand will vie for top spot in Group A.

Tonga and Samoa will then face-off at 5pm with both sides hoping to earn their first points here in the Cook Islands.

New Zealand’s record in this competition makes them the favourite going into this match, especially given New Zealand won their only previous encounter at this level 13-1 in 2012.

In that edition of the OFC U-17 Women’s Championship New Caledonia were the only side to score against the Kiwis but coach Matthieu Delcroix won’t be focusing on that aspect.