Football fans at Griffith University will have more than one eye on the final round of games in the Tournament of Nations in the United States this Friday morning, with four members of the Matildas squad that is defending the title having studied or are studying at Griffith.
Clare Polkinghorne, Tameka Butt, Elise Kellond-Knight and Hayley Raso all started in the agonising 1-1 draw with the host nation in the last round when a last-gasp equaliser denied Australia a repeat of its famous victory last year when business student Tameka Butt netted the winner.
In the final round, Australia will be aiming to beat Japan by a few goals and then hope that Brazil either prevents the US from winning or loses by a margin significantly less than Australia’s winning margin. The destination of the Tournament of Nations title could come down to goal difference or even the number of goals scored.
A Tournament of Nations triumph for Australia would be celebrated with extra zeal at Griffith University.
Clare Polkinghorne is studying a Master of Criminology and Criminal Justice after previously completing an honours degree in psychological science. Tameka Butt, who netted her 10th international goal in the game first round game against Brazil, recently graduated with a Master of Business/Master of Marketing. Elise Kellond-Knight is a Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Science graduate, and Hayley Raso is a current Bachelor of Paramedicine student.
All four are members of the Griffith Sports College which supports elite athletes in balancing their sporting commitments around the world with the demands of studying for a university degree.
Australia’s final Tournament of Nations game kicks off at 7.45am on Friday morning (AEST) against the reigning AFC Asian Cup champions, Japan. Pending a successful result in that tie, then all eyes turn to the meeting of the US and Brazil in the final game of the tournament later in the day.