By Boris Esono Nwenfor
The indomitable Lionesses of Cameroon have booked their ticket to the round of 16 of the 2019 edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup after beating New Zealand in their last group game. The lionesses knew that a win will guarantee that they reach the knock out stage for a second successive world cup, and a brace from inform striker Nchout Ajara made sure that happened.
The striker, who plies her trade in the Norwegian League with Valerenga scored a brace in the second half to beat New Zealand 2b goals to 1, thereby qualifying as one of the third best teams.
Ajara’s goal equally saw her being named as the player of the match.
It was a difficult first half as both teams were even placed as they cancelled each other. The second half was however very productive as both teams went for goals, knowing a victory sends either of them to the round of 16.
Cameroon quickly went ahead through Nchout Ajara at the 57th minute of play with their qualification ticket on the horizon. The team was however left struck and fearing elimination with an own goal from Marie Aurelle Awona at the 80th minute.
Both teams pressed for the winning goal with numerous chances missed by the New Zealnd side as Cameroon’s Ngo Ndom on fine form, keeping out the New Zealand side. At the last kick of the game, it was Cameroon who made sure they are still in the competition as Nchout Ajara scored her second goal of the game to give Cameroon a 2-1 victory.
Cameroon eventually finished third in their group behind Netherlands who topped the group with 9 points, second by Canada with 6 points. Nchout Ajara is the second Cameroon player to score in multiple women’s world cups (2015 and 2019) after teammate Gabrielle Onguene.