• Filipinas blank Iraq in Asian Cup qualifiers

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    The Philippine women’s football team relied on its first-half surge to overpower Iraq, 4-0, for its second straight win in the group stage of the Asian Women’s Cup qualifiers at the Pamir Stadium in Tajikistan on Wednesday.

    The Filipinas started hot, scoring four goals just before the break to notch their second victory for six points in Group A.

    Eva Madarang, a first timer in the international scene for the Philippines and had a brace in their 4-0 win over United Arab Emirates, started the PH XI’s onslaught with a strike in the 21st minute.

    Defender Hali Long doubled the lead of PH side two minutes before the 45th-minute mark with a header off a free kick by teammate Patricia Tomanon.

    The Philippines continued with its attacks and De La Salle University midfielder Sara Castañeda and former Far Eastern University star Alesa Dolino added a goal each in stoppage time to erect a 4-0 at the half.

    The wards of coach Leticia Bautista did not give Iraq any chance to score a goal in the second half to start the tournament with an impressive 2-0 card.

    Iraq remained winless after two matches. Iraq lost to host Tajikistan, 1-0, in its opening game.

    The Philippines will meet Tajikistan on Friday. JAELLE NEVIN REYES

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