WUHAN, China (AFP) - Norway sent hosts China packing and Brazil did the same to Australia as they clinched their places in the women's World Cup semi-finals on Sunday.
A defensive howler put paid to Chinese dreams as they lost 1-0 to traditional powerhouse and former champions Norway in Wuhan, while the Brazilians ended the Australian fairytale 3-2 in Tianjin.
Norway now travel to northeastern Tianjin to play defending champions Germany on Wednesday while Brazil make the trip to eastern Hangzhou to face off against the top ranked United States on Thursday.
China had only themselves to blame for not upsetting Norway, who won the tournament in 1995.
They had most of the first-half possession only to see their hard work go to waste when Wang Kun's hesitation in the 32nd minute let Isabell Herlovsen collect the ball in the box and fire it into the roof of the net.
"The game was very tight and we managed to score because they made a mistake," said Norway coach Bjarne Berntsen. "Sometimes tight games like this are decided on mistakes like that.
"China played like we expected them to," he added. "They had five midfield and just one up front. That showed they had a lot of respect for us."
China had plenty of chances to level but once again strikers Ma Xiaoxu and Han Duan failed to deliver, squandering what came their way as the renaissance under Swedish coach Marika Domanski-Lyfors ground to a halt.
After the match Domanski-Lyfors suggested she could step down after failing to meet her target of taking China to the last four.
"I have to think about whether I will be coach for the Olympics," she said. "Whether I am coach or someone else is coach, I think this team is great. I love this team."
Despite the error by 21-year-old Wang, Domanski-Lyfors praised her team for shutting down Norway and doing everything that was asked of them, except score goals in front of a raucous crowd at a packed Wuhan Sports Center Stadium.
"We played great defensively and they only had one shot on goal," she said.
"It was an individual mistake that cost us but these things happen. Norway are one of the most efficient teams in the world and if they get just one chance, they take it."
In a pulsating encounter in Tianjin, Brazil ended Asian interest in the tournament but needed some magic to subdue Australia.
The Samba Girls were 2-0 up in 23 minutes but were pegged back by Lisa de Vanna and Lauren Colthorpe before Cristiane settled the tie with a classy strike on 76 minutes.
"We relaxed a little bit and Australia equalised but after that our team controlled the game," said Brazil coach Jorge Barcellos. "We were very happy with the winning goal."
The Matildas, ranked 15th to Brazil's seventh, were always going to be up against it and their task looked mountainous in the fourth minute when Formiga curled a shot in off the bar.
With Australia struggling to settle, things went from bad to worse when Kate McShea dragged down Renata Costa in the box and Marta converted the penalty for her fifth goal of the tournament.
But just as Brazil looked to be coasting, de Vanna intercepted a loose back pass and rounded goalkeeper Andreia on 36 minutes.
Australia piled on the pressure in the second half and stunned the South Americans on 68 minutes when midfielder Colthorpe headed home.
But as extra-time beckoned Brazil dug deep and Cristiane settled matters, curling a shot into the top right corner.
|11||L. Larsen Kaurin|
|Coach: B. Berntsen|
for L. Larsen Kaurin 64'
for S. Gulbrandsen 75'
for I. Herlovsen 90+3'
|Streich: Freiburg unfortunate in Europa League exit|
|Pulis backs Chamakh to continue revival|
|Balotelli eyes World Cup opportunity|
|Pardew keen to retain Cisse|
|Garde keen for Lyon improvement|
|Barkley set to be offered new Everton deal|
|Under-fire Cocu eyes new signings at PSV|
|Defoe could return despite Soldado hat-trick heroics|
|Liga MX: Leon 2 America 0|
|´Anger and disappointment´ in PSV dressing room|
|QPR reveal new stadium plans|
|Petkovic: Lazio criticism warranted|
|Laudrup hails Swansea´s European achievement|
|Soldado confidence will soar, says Villas-Boas|
|Guingamp can test Monaco with speed, says Ranieri|
|UEFA plan to prioritise match-fixing problem|
|UEFA Europa League Wrap: PSV crash out, Tottenham run riot|
|UEFA Europa League: Tottenham 4 Anzhi Makhachkala 1|
|Bayern to face MLS All-Stars|
|Gerrard out for at least four weeks|
|UEFA Europa League: Maribor 2 Wigan Athletic 1|
|UEFA Europa League: St Gallen 1 Swansea City 0|
|Klinsmann extends USA deal|
|La Liga Preview: Osasuna v Real Madrid|
|FA to consult Hull fans over name change|
|Premier League Preview: Newcastle United v Southampton|
|West Brom wait on Anichebe illness update|
|Serie A Preview: Juventus v Sassuolo|
|Pulis plays down reports of Rhodes raid|
|Bundesliga Preview: Hoffenheim v Borussia Dortmund|
|Meulensteen pleased with Fulham progress|
|Premier League Preview: Everton v Fulham|
|Bassong signs new Norwich deal|
|Dutt confident of Werder response|
|La Liga Preview: Barcelona v Villarreal|
|Pochettino proud of Southampton character|
|Zanetti urges Inter to make Lavezzi move|
|Anigo refuses to rule out Marseille extension|
|Hughes wants Stoke momentum|
|Premier League Preview: Chelsea v Crystal Palace|
|Bundesliga is the best, says Ribery|
|Olsen pens new Denmark deal|
|Premier League Preview: West Ham v Sunderland|
|Howedes and Draxler out until new year|
|Sakho targeting Europe return with Liverpool|
|Bundesliga Preview: Bayern Munich v Hamburg|
|Vorm to undergo knee surgery|
|Mkhitaryan lauds Dortmund spirit|
|Young unconcerned by ´diver´ tag|
|Higuain gutted after ´injustice´|
|Berlusconi blasts ´deliquents´ after violence|
|Premier League Preview: Manchester City v Arsenal|
|Poyet calls for Sunderland patience|
|Neymar happy after hat-trick|
|Martinez hails ´special´ Deulofeu|
|Mourinho wants ´King Didier´ reunion|
|Villas-Boas aims for perfect Europa League record|
|De Boer: Milan unworthy of last-16 spot|
|Colombia Primera A: Deportivo Cali 0 Atletico Nacional 0|
|FIFA Club World Cup Preview: Monterrey v Raja Casablanca|
|Fonseca berates Porto defence|
|Copa Sudamericana: Lanus 2 Ponte Preta 0 (3-1 agg)|
|Klopp blasts wasteful Dortmund despite win|
|Yakin rues Ivanov red card, Basel´s Euro exit|
|Atletico ´hungry´ for success, says Garcia|
|Allegri relieved as Milan progress|
|Martino lauds ´amazing´ Neymar|
|De Laurentiis: Napoli will take Europa League seriously|
|Lennon slams ´weak´ Celtic|
|Wenger feels for eliminated Napoli|
|Matip: Win was for coach Keller|
|Marseille should not be ashamed, says Anigo|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Anigo eyes Marseille revival, Monaco target PSG|
|Chelsea always in control, says Mourinho|
|UEFA Champions League: Marseille 1 Borussia Dortmund 2|
|UEFA Champions League: Barcelona 6 Celtic 1|
|UEFA Champions League: Milan 0 Ajax 0|
|UEFA Champions League: Austria Vienna 4 Zenit St Petersburg 1|
|FIFA Club World Cup: Raja Casablanca 2 Auckland City 1|
|UEFA Champions League: Napoli 2 Arsenal 0|
|UEFA Champions League: Atletico Madrid 2 Porto 0|
|Schwarzer makes Champions League history|
|Kisenkov handed six-match spitting suspension|
|Bruce happy with Sagbo impact|
|Valencia eager to attract investment|
|Roux not focused on World Cup selection|
|Corinthians name Menezes as new coach|
|Too early for top-four talk, insists Cabaye|
|Tottenham to fast-track Vertonghen recovery|
|Beaten Conte critical of conditions|
|Ibrahimovic hails PSG youngsters|
|Honda to join Milan in January|
|Giaccherini happy at Sunderland, says agent|
|UEFA Champions League: Galatasaray 1 Juventus 0|
|Baines eyes festive return|
|Boateng extends Bayern deal|
|Pieters tips De Jong for Stoke|
|Arrasate talks up Champions League impact|
|Spalletti expects Vienna test|
|Juventus ´not interested´ in Kolarov|
|Fonseca calls for Porto balance|
|Dalglish backs Suarez to shine on world stage|
|Brunt: West Brom are no Mickey Mouse club|
|Klopp unsure over Marseille sacking effect|
|Howson in ´best form´|
|Ronaldo grounded despite record haul|
|Liverpool´s Kelly fighting fit|
|Guardiola calm over Champions League defeat|
|Bony boost for Swansea|
|A-League Preview: Mariners eye perfect 10 against Reds|
|Lucescu laments Donetsk performance|
|Michel: Olympiacos deserved knockout-stage spot|
|Pellegrini displays Munich confusion|
|Delaney credits Copenhagen second-half display|
|Sociedad president learns lessons from exit|
|Jesus believes Benfica deserved to progress|
|Vrba delighted with ´amazing´ Moscow win|
|Hyypia hails Leverkusen belief|
|Second-half show disappoints Blanc|
|UEFA Europa League Preview: Maribor v Wigan Athletic|
|Moyes eyes UEFA Champions League glory|
|Lahm takes positive from City loss|