The Philippine national women's football team got its first taste of action since winning the AFF Women's Championship crown last July, but the Filipinas fell to higher ranked New Zealand, 2-1, in a friendly match on Wednesday in the USA.
The 26-year-old Sarina Bolden gave the Philippines a 1-0 halftime lead but they could not sustain the momentum in the second half as world no. 22 New Zealand completed the comeback victory.
"It was a performance where we matched the team that's ranked considerably higher than us and it's just another day that the results can go our way but certainly there's a lot of room for us to improve," said head coach Alen Stajcic in the post-game interview.
"But overall, it was a good performance against a strong team."
The Philippines is currently placed at no. 53 in the FIFA women's world rankings.
The friendly clash is part of the country's training camp in Irvine, California in preparation for the 2023 FIFA World Cup, which the country qualified for after a semifinals appearance in the 2022 AFC Asian Women's Cup earlier this year.
—JMB, GMA News