OTTAWA, June 8- Former champions Germany and Norway got off to winning starts at the women’s World Cup on Sunday as newcomers Ivory Coast and Thailand took a battering.
Germany whipped the Ivory Coast 10-0 after Norway thrashed Thailand 4-0 in the opening round of Group B matches in Ottawa’s Lansdowne Stadium.
The 2003 and 2007 winners took five goals in either half against the outclassed Ivorians, who at 67 in the world are the lowest ranked team in the tournament.
Hat-tricks from Celia Sasic (3, 14, 31) and Anja Mittag (29, 35, 64) put the world’s top team on their way with Simone Laudehr (71), Sara Daebritz (75), Melanie Behringer (79) and Alexandra Popp (85) also finding the net.
The best goal of the game was Mittag’s second, when she picked up a Tabea Kemme cross and alone in the middle of the area hammered the ball into the back of the net.
But for some saves by Ivory Coast goalkeeper Dominique Thiamale the damage could have been more severe for ‘Les Elephantes’.
Germany maintained their unbeaten opening match World Cup record as no African team have ever won their first game.
Earlier Norway, the 1995 champions, outclassed Asian newcomers Thailand.
Veteran skipper Trine Ronning opened for the 1995 winners after quarter of an hour with Isabell Herlovsen claiming a quick-fire double after 29 and 34 minutes with Ada Hegerberg putting the result beyond doubt with her 68th-minute header.
Thailand, ranked 29, had missed a chance for their first World Cup goal after five minutes when Silawan Intamee just missed the target following a blazing run down the flanks from Kanjana Sung-Ngoen.
The hammering could have been more severe but for Thai goalkeeper Waraporn Boonsing doing well to keep out a Maren Mjelde penalty awarded for handball with 15 minutes to go.
“The first game of the tournament is always nerve-wracking,” said Norway coach Even Pellerud.
“We are happy to have three points, but we have to improve aspects of our play against other teams.
“We’re ready for the game against Germany on Thursday.”
Thailand next play fellow dubutants Ivory Coast, before wrapping up their group games against top-ranked Germany.
“We met a very good team and learned how women’s football at international level works,” said Thai coach Nuengruethai Sathongwien
“Getting the first goal would have given us a morale boost more than anything, because we were playing a superior team.”