INCHEON, SOUTH KOREA – Hat tricks by Yuika Sugasawa and Mizuho Sakaguchi fueled defending champion Japan to a 12-0 victory over Jordan in women’s soccer competition at the Asian Games on Thursday.
Nahomi Kawasumi and Chinatsu Kira each bagged a brace for Norio Sasaki’s world and Asian champions, who also saw captain Aya Miyama register on the scoresheet.
Japan, on four points from two games after outshooting hapless Jordan 30 to 1, lead Group B on goal difference over China, which thumped Taiwan 4-0.
Japan was up by eight at the break, and that was after it missed several chances inside the box. Jordan had one effort on target all game, a harmless free kick in the 22nd minute hit straight at goalkeeper Erina Yamane.
Kawasumi opened the floodgates in the fifth minute, Sugasawa doubling the lead eight minutes later with her first of three goals in the half.
Sakaguchi made it 3-0 for Japan after 20 minutes before finding the net again a dozen minutes later. As if Japan needed the help, an own goal by Alaa Abu Kasheh in the 36th minute had Jordan staring at a 5-0 deficit.
Sugasawa struck in the 40th and 41st minute to cap her hat trick, and Kira scored in the last minute of the half to give Japan an eight-goal advantage.
After drawing its opener 0-0 with China on Monday, Japan took no chances and didn’t slow down in the second half.
Kira picked up right where she left off in the first half to make it 9-0 in the 49th minute. Miyama got in on the action with her first goal of the tournament on the hour mark, and Sakaguchi completed her hat trick after 71 minutes.
Kawasumi closed the scoring with her second of a nightmarish evening for Jordan.