Super sub Roche strikes late
Ireland 2 Kazakhstan 1
Raheny United striker Stephanie Roche was Ireland's heroine in the FIFA Women's World Cup qualifier against Kazakhstan in Turner's Cross last night as Noel King's side recorded a narrow victory.
Ireland took the lead in the 43rd minute through Fiona O'Sullivan but the Irish were rocked by a strike in the 64th minute when Yekaterina Krassyukova scored from 30 yards against the run of play.
Ireland's savior, substitute Roche, was on hand to poke home from close range in the 87th minute to keep Ireland's dreams of World Cup qualification on track.
O'Sullivan broke the deadlockwhen a corner from Sonya Hughes caused uncertainty in the Kazakhstan box and the powerful O'Sullivan blasted it past the keeper to score her first competitive goal on her home debut.
The Irish began the second half brightly but were were hit with a sucker punch just after the hour as Kazakhstan scored through Krassyukova in the 64th minute.
However, Irish persistence paid off when Aine O'Gorman broke down the right wing in the 87th minute and crossed to O'Sullivan who controlled the ball well and as her shot went across the face of goal, Roche secured the well-earned victory for Ireland. Boxing heroine Katie Taylor came on as a substitute late in the game.
Republic of Ireland -- E Byrne, M Curtin, M Therese McDonnell, N Fahy, Y Tracy, S Hughes (K Taylor), C Grant (C) (S McDonnell 75), J Connor, A O'Gorman, F O'Sullivan, S Curtis (S Roche 77).