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OLYMPICS

Sinclair powers Canada past South Africa

The Canadian women's soccer team put itself in position to grab a place in the knockout round on Saturday after Christine Sinclair scored a pair of second-half goals in a 3-0 win over South Africa in Group F play.

Following a 2-1 defeat against Japan on the opening day, Canada needed to take three points from its game against South Africa, and the Canadians got off to a great start when Melissa Tancredi put them in front after seven minutes.

Canada was in control for much of the game but it wasn't until Sinclair's goal in the 58th minute that the result was secure.

The Canadian captain then added another goal in the last five minutes to seal the win, which puts the team one point behind both Sweden and Japan in Group F after those two sides played to a 0-0 draw on Saturday.

Canada will face Sweden on July 31 with a chance to clinch a place in the next round with a win.

South Africa was viewed as the weakest side in the group prior to the start of the tournament, so it was important for Canada to take the lead inside of 10 minutes through Tancredi.

It seemed like a second goal was coming for Canada but it didn't arrive until the 58th minute when Sinclair sent a looping header over goalkeeper Thokozile Mndaweni that hit the crossbar and allowed her to follow up and slam home the rebound.

Canada was on its way to three points and Sinclair capped the win in style by bursting through the middle of the defense and slotting her shot past the goalkeeper from inside the penalty area.

Brazil coasted to a 5-0 victory against Cameroon in its opening match, but found things to be much more difficult against New Zealand on Saturday.

There weren't many chances for either side as New Zealand did a good job in frustrating Brazil. However, Cristiane's volley in the 86th minute rescued a 1-0 win for the South Americans, who remain on top of Group E.