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States mark 100-day countdown until Women’s World Cup

Chris Minns and ex-Matildas player Sarah Walsh at the 100 Days to Go event for the Women's World Cup. <i>Photo: AAP</i>

Chris Minns and ex-Matildas player Sarah Walsh at the 100 Days to Go event for the Women's World Cup. Photo: AAP

Fans of the world game have gathered on a chilly autumn morning in Sydney to kick off a countdown to one of the global sporting calendar’s biggest events.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 begins in 100 days, when fans from around the world will converge on Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide and cities in New Zealand for the tournament held once in every four years.

It is a significant moment for Sydney and New South Wales, Premier Chris Minns said at the FIFA event in Sydney on Tuesday.

“I know that the next generation of Matildas will be inspired when they see our global superstars Sam Kerr, Clare Polkinghorne and Hayley Raso among others take the field for Australia,” he told reporters.

Eleven of the cup’s 64 matches will take place in Sydney, including the opening match in Australia with the Matildas taking on Ireland on July 20, while another eight will take place in Queensland.

“I’m so delighted that we’ll be hosting games right here in Brisbane, ticket sales are going extremely well,” Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.

“Girls and women can do anything. Now is the time for the Matildas to shine.

“We wish them all the best in their match …. and we look forward to welcoming them here back to Australia for the FIFA World Cup.”

The tournament, from July 20 until August 20, will be the biggest ever women’s football event, chief operating officer FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand Jane Fernandez said.

“This is an event you simply do not want to miss out on – with tickets back on sale today, now is your chance to secure your seat and witness history in the making.”

The tournament’s unique ‘Unity Beat’ was unveiled at events in Sydney/Gadigal and Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau to celebrate the milestone.

The Unity Beat – a powerful chant that will be a sound and symbol to celebrate greatness throughout the tournament – will be an inclusive and consistent part of the fan experience at the first 32-nation FIFA Women’s World Cup.

FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura said the sound will become synonymous with the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023.

“When the Unity Beat plays in each of the tournament’s nine welcoming host cities, fans from all over the world will know that’s it’s time to join in and create a truly unforgettable atmosphere.

“From the streets to the stadiums, the Unity Beat will be a call to action for supporters to unite and remember the one thing that has brought them all together – football.”

-AAP

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