This was our first game day here at the World Cup. It is a huge game for us, against Brazil, a team ranked much higher than us. I woke up pretty early (7 a.m.) with a few nerves as we prepared to put all our hard work into action on the field in front of a good 30,000 people, and a live broadcast to 180 countries around the world. 8:00 am - breakfast
At 10 am, we had the team meeting about the game protocol, then into our last team meeting on our reminders of team structure and shape with our head coach. 12:00 pm - lunch
The game wasn’t till 5:00 pm, so we had a lot of waiting around to do. I made sure I kept busy cleaning my boots, packing bags, going over our DVD’s of the opposition and our roles and responsibilities on the field, so the nerves didn’t get to me. 3:00 p.m. - We left for the stadium... escorted by police cars on all sides of our bus.... most of the roads and high ways were blocked off to allow our bus through, with the police cars turning on their sirens if any cars neared the bus. 3.45 pm - Arrived at the stadium... and moved into the locker room. The New Zealand locker room is always decorated with NZ flags and kiwi quotes by our manager to remind us of who we are playing for back home. 4:00 pm - First official checks are done.... of the uniform, jewelry, etc. 4:20 pm - Out onto the field for our warm up... wearing ice vests to cool us down ( not use to the heat in NZ at this time of the year!) 4:40pm - Back into locker room, change into official kit, have last player meeting 4:50 pm - Teams out for national anthem 5:00 pm - Kick off
I played 70 minutes at left forward. We worked really hard to hold our structure, and thought we were in the game down 1-0 at halftime. But the Brazilians are a class team, and pinned us back in our own half for most of the second period. They scored 4 goals in the second half. The end result was really disappointing for us, but we are an extremely young team, and will learn a lot from this game and move on together.
Thursday, September 13th:
Mainly a recovery day for the girls that played. I woke up slightly later with breakfast at 9:00 am. 11 am was a pool recovery and stretching session, 1 pm - lunch 1 -6 - Down time, where players are free to do whatever they please. A few of us got together and watched the game from the night before, tried to gain some positives from the experience , and look at how we can improve for the next game. 6 pm - Dinner 7 pm - Team meeting and video analysis of last night’s game.
We are all still very disappointed with the loss against Brazil, but have put the negatives behind us. and are now focusing on and are looking forward to our next game against Denmark.