Matildas too strong for Taiwan

Australia thumped Taiwan 4-0 to get their AFC Women's Asian Cup campaign off to an ideal start in torrential rain here on Thursday.

Heather Garriock opened the scoring in the 18th minute shortly before the skies opened and heavy rain lashed the pitch for the remainder of the half.

Tom Sermanni's side adapted to the difficult conditions best and launched repeated attacks as they looked to build on their lead. And it was no surprise when just before the break when Garriock completed her brace by side-footing home from close range.

Tan Wen-lin spurned a glorious chance to hit back seconds after the restart when she capitalised on an attempted clearance by goalkeeper Lydia Williams on the edge of the area but sent her shot into the side netting.

The miss proved costly as Australia went further ahead in the 50th minute when Jenna Tristram controlled a high ball in the area. Although she miscued her initial shot, she stabbed home at the second attempt.

The Matildas rounded off their victory with 10 minutes left when a miss-kick by a Taiwan defender allowed substitute Lisa De Vanna to charge down on goal before sending a shot beyond the keeper.

Korea Republic take on Japan in the other Group B game at Thong Nat Stadium later Thursday.

On Wednesday, North Korea beat Thailand and defending champions China squeezed past hosts Vietnam in Group A. The top two teams from each group got through to the semi-finals on 5 June, with the final three days later.