Walsh Passed Fit for Women's Tournament

Westfield Matildas' star striker, Sarah Walsh, has been cleared by medical staff to play in the AFC Women’s Asian Cup.

Westfield Matildas' star striker, Sarah Walsh, has today been cleared by Westfield Matildas medical staff to play in the AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2010.

The AFC Women-s Asian Cup 2010 officially began today with the Westfield Matildas set to test the Chengdu Sports Center pitch this afternoon before their first Group match on Wednesday against Vietnam.

Walsh, who was under an injury cloud following minor knee surgery last month has exceeded expectations in her recovery and will be available for the group matches against Vietnam, South Korea and China.

“I think it-s a credit to Walshy for the dedication she has shown and enormous amount of work she has put in to get herself back to fitness,” said Westfield Matildas Head Coach Tom Sermanni.

“This is not only a boost for the team in terms of Sarah-s ability to win matches but it lifts the playing group as a whole and proves what a class athlete Sarah really is."

Central Coast Mariners- striker Michelle Heyman, who was brought in as cover for Walsh, will miss out on Sermanni-s 23-player list that is due to be handed in to the AFC today.

“It-s disappointing for Michelle (Heyman) to miss out but she has done so well and improved dramatically in such a short time that she is sure to have a long Westfield Matildas career in front of her,” said Sermanni.

Sarah Walsh, who is the top goal scorer amongst the current Westfield Matildas squad, was clearly relieved to be given the coach-s nod following weeks of intensive work to recover in time for the tournament.

“It-s been a long four weeks and I-m very grateful to our medical team and Tom (Sermanni) who worked so hard and showed me so much support to get me back in time for the cup,” said Walsh.

“Now my knee is strong it-s about concentrating on my fitness and getting out there to help the girls qualify for the World Cup and win the Asian Cup.”

In more good news for the Westfield Matildas ABC TV will now not only show each of Australia-s group matches live and exclusive but also cover the competition until its conclusion on May 29.