Reggae Girlz go down 0-3 to Brazil in first World Cup game

GRENOBLE, France – Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz first ever World Cup game ended in a disappointing defeat when they went down to Brazil 3-0 in their opening game here Sunday.

Brazil was carried to victory by striker Cristiane who scored a hat-trick, the first of the tournament.

In doing so, Cristiane, who plays her club football in her home country for Sao Paulo, became the oldest player to score a World Cup hat-trick in either the men’s or women’s game.

Aged 34 years and 25 days, she beat the record held by Cristiano Ronaldo, who was 33 years and 130 days old when he scored a hat-trick in Portugal’s 3-3 draw with Spain at the men’s World Cup in Russia in June 2018.

The margin of defeat for the Reggae Girlz could have been much bigger was it not for a spectacular performance by their goalkeeper Sydney Schneider. Schneider produced several superb saves, including a penalty, to limit Brazil’s damage.

Cristiane scored in the 15th and 50th minutes for the Brazilians, before curling home a 64th-minute free kick to complete the hat-trick.

Jamaica’s most dangerous player was Khadija “ Bunny” Shaw who was denied a first-half equalizer by a fine one-handed save from Barbara.

The Jamaicans appeared nervous for the first fifteen minutes of the game, but settled after Brazil’s first goal on a controversial penalty. Jamaica made several offensive moves, but failed to capitalize,

In the Reggae Girls group Italy joined Brazil as winners. Italy upset one of the tournaments favorites Australia 2-1 before the Jamaica-Brazil game. Jamaica plays Italy next on June 14. It is expected that the Reggae Girlz, with the first game nerves out of the way will provide Italy with a stronger challenge than they offered to Brazil.

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