China's dream of conquering the world on home soil came crashing down in Wuhan, where Isabell Herlovsen's 32nd-minute strike was enough to see Norway scrape through to a semi-final meeting with Germany.
The hosts dominated much of the match, with Han Duan - who spent the match hugging the left touchline - spurning the best early chance before then sliding a reverse pass through for captain Bi Yan to test Bente Nordby's reflexes from close range.
Yet although Norway's usual possession game faltered against a team prepared to harry them at every turn, it was Bjarne Berntsen's side who went into the break a goal to the good. The pace and directness of Herlovsen, a surprise starter on the left of a three-pronged attack, had been proving a thorn in the hosts' side and when Wang Kun dozed off defending a Lene Larsen Kaurin cross, the teenager sneaked in to rifle a left-foot shot into the roof of the net.
The home fans were stunned into silence, and their team would have been two down six minutes into the second half but for a wonderful save from Zhang Yanru to tip Ingvild Stensland's piledriver on to the woodwork. China soon resumed their relentless quest for an equaliser, but despite the noisy backing of a partisan 52,000 crowd, their efforts were to no avail.
Player of the Match: Ane Stangeland Horpestad (NOR)