Hopes fizzle as players sizzle in stadium cauldron

JETS captain Amber Neilson has played all over the world with the Matildas but rarely has she encountered conditions like yesterday.

Temperatures nudged 44 degrees on the pitch as the Jets gave up two late goals to go down 3-1 to Canberra United in the W-League clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium yesterday.

A steaming westerly wind buffeted the ground, adding to the oppressive heat and forcing teams to take drinks breaks midway through each half.

Players had wet towels draped over their heads as they tried to rehydrate during the breaks.

"It was so dry. I was forever trying to find saliva in my mouth to help breathe," Neilson said. "It is up there with the hottest conditions. When it is hot, mental toughness comes into it.

"In the drinks breaks we had wet towels and lots of energy drinks and water. We did everything we could.

"It was the same for both teams so we can't use it as an excuse."

The Jets trailed 1-0 early but hit back to level, courtesy of a Neilson penalty, in the 56th minute.

But two goals in a minute proved fatal.

"At 1-all we were buzzing and I thought we were on top," Neilson said.

"We haven't scored many goals this year and when we do, we take a lot of energy and go forward. Then silly mistakes at the back again and they get a goal."

The win was a happy homecoming for Young Matildas midfielder Emily van Egmond, who moved to Canberra earlier this year with father and former Jets men's coach Gary van Egmond.

The visitors went ahead after 10 minutes from a free kick near the right corner flag. Ellyse Perry swung a cross into the box for Cian Maciejewski to glance a header past Alison Logue.

Just as the Jets looked to be a getting a grip on the game the visitors struck through Tseng Shu-o.

Any chance the Jets had disappeared a minute later when 15-year-old Kahlia Hogg hit a bomb from 25 metres.

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