The Canadian girls came back to their spiritual home of Vancouver on Sunday to take on Switzerland in a Women’s World Cup Round of 16 match-up.
A staggering 53,855 supporters packed BC Place to the rafters in a sea of red and white. It was the biggest crowd ever to see a Canadian national team play a game, and although they were served up more of a tense and tight game rather than a classic, they witnessed Canada advance with a 1-0 win thanks to a second half strike from Josee Belanger.
AFTN photographer Tom Ewasiuk was there to capture all the action before, during and after the game and here’s his “Story In Pictures”, with a full Flickr slideshow at the end.[Also check out Tom’s website www.residualimagephotography.com for more of his photos and work].
The scene is set
The fans are ready on Father’s Day
The Destroyer is all taped up and ready to rumble
A pensive, and rare unsmiling, John Herdman takes in all the pre-match build-up
Karina Leblanc bringing the style factor as always
Needs more cowbells!
The teams come out to a cacophony of noise
Canada’s starting XI
And that of the Swiss Misses
Melissa Tancredi is brought back into the starting line-up for her kung fu skills
Canada come close in the 16th minutes with Josee Belanger’s cross-come-shot
Which loops over the head of Swiss keeper Gaelle Thalmann but crashes off the crossbar
The pain of playing for your country
As Thalmann can testify after being in the wars early herself
Scoreless at the half, Canadian nerves are eased in the 52nd minute when the ball breaks to Belanger in the box
And she fires it past Thalmann for the opening, and matchwinning, goal – 1-0 Canada!
Sparking jubilant scenes on the Canadian bench
Christine Sinclair comes within inches of getting on the end of a cross as Canada push for the killer second
And they come even closer to getting it when Caroline Abbe, easily, clears off the Swiss line
As the Swiss push at the other end, Player of the Match Erin McLeod comes up with the big late save from Vanessa Bernauer
And McLeod stops at nothing again to get to the ball in stoppage time
But Canada hang on and the ecstatic celebrations can begin
And the red and white hordes join in
You can see a Flickr slideshow of all of Tom’s photos from the game below: