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July 26, 2012
Great Britain doesn't disappoint, Brazil, Sweden romp, Japan wins

In the very first game of the London Summer Games, Arsenal defender Stephanie Houghton scored from a free kick in the 64th minute to boost Great Britain to its first Olympic triumph, a 1-0 win over New Zealand on Wednesday afternoon.

Goalkeeper Karen Bardsley came up big in the waning minutes, saving an Amber Hearn shot in a Group E encounter in Cardiff, Wales.

"The occasion got to us at the start, but the important thing was to get the goal that won us the game," Great Britain coach Hope Powell said. "I thought New Zealand started better and it took us time to get to grips with the game. But the players put in an admirable performance in the conditions."


Marta scored a brace and substitute Cristiane became the all-time leading women's Olympic goal-scorer as the South Americans rolled over Cameroon in a Group F game in Cardiff.

Francielle and Renata Costa also found the back of the net for Brazil. Cristiane tallied her historic goal in the 78th minute before Marta put an exclamation point on the win 10 minutes later.

"The first match is always very difficult," Brazil coach Jorge Barcellos said. "There is a lot of emotion and anxiety involved, but we have been practicing and played a good game against a very fast Cameroon team."


Lisa Dahlkvist and Lotta Schelin scored a minute apart to break open a close Group F match against South Africa, which made its Olympic debut in a Group F game in Coventry.

The Swedes grabbed a 1-0 seventh-minute advantage thanks to a deflected shot from captain Nilla Fischer. Then Dahlkvist and Schelin scored only 60 seconds apart to propel Sweden to a 3-0 lead. After South Africa closed within two goals in the 60th minute, Schelin connected for her second of the game in the 64th minute.


The Japanese grabbed a 2-0 lead and never looked back in its Group F victory in Coventry.

Nahomi Kawasumi (33rd-minute goal) and Aya Miyama (header in the 44th minute) lifted the defending Women's World Cup champions before Melissa Tancredi sliced the lead in half for the Canadians in the 55th minute.

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