The first word that comes to mind is “chess”. It has been used already by Ann Odong but I’m reluctant to change it, as it really is the most appropriate way to describe the match.

In the first moments of the game, what every Matildas supporter hoped would happen, did happen. The Matildas, through a deadly Laura Alleway / Lisa De Vanna combination, found space behind Sweden and managed to score quickly and somewhat easily.

Not to be outdone, Sweden promptly rallied, leveling the score at 1-1 via a sweetly timed and gorgeously executed strike from Sofia Jakobsson.

And really this is where the chess began, with each team moving a pawn only to be countered by an equally impressive opposing move.

Sweden’s Caroline Seger and Lisa Dahlkvist pulled the strings as they danced through the midfield. Expertly choreographing Therese Sjogran and Lotta Schelin in attack.

There was never enough space though. For either team.

As soon as one rope was pulled, Australia’s Elise Kellond-Knight and Emily Van Egmond responded with moves which could have been straight out Sun Tzu’s mastermind strategy and tactical treatise, “The Art of War”.

At different stages of the game it was frustrating to watch, with neither country able to penetrate and infiltrate the final third with any fury.

But the frustration was purely because we hoped the tussle would erupt into a spectacular showing of flair and dare I say it, goals.

In the end, what it amounted to was that the teams were evenly matched. Quite an achievement for the Matildas given their lower ranking, but really it was no surprise at all as they prove time and again that they should not be underrated.

The Matildas conceivably have the game to match almost anyone and they have to self belief to do exactly that.

In some ways, this was their best match. An opinion not validated by Player of the Match, Kellond-Knight.

“The best so far has been the start against the US. I think the first half an hour that we played is probably the best that we have shown.”

Yet, I hold firm that this was their best, albeit from a different perspective.

The Matildas showed just how fast they’re learning, implementing the skills and tactics to match it with the best.

The football they’re playing is one of a mature professional team.

They demonstrated extraordinary patience, with Kellond-Knight commenting that was what they were prepared for.

“We knew Sweden defended with a nice compact block. To break them down we knew we had to play a patient brand of football.”

At half time the message from coach Alen Stajcic was to again be more patient with the ball.

“I think we tried to force it a lot. We started fantastically in the first 10 minutes and then lost our way a little bit and did force things.”

The Matildas are now in an exciting position, preparing to take on Brazil in the Round of 16. Something the team is eagerly anticipating. Kellond-Knight in particular is “excited”.

“You come to the world cup to play big games so we’re going to play another big game. We’ve played three so far so this will be our fourth. Bring it on”.

“They’re free flowing. Very man on man orientated. Almost like an African type football like you saw with Nigeria where you saw they’re very skillful, very technical. They can just pull something out of left field that you don’t expect and I guess that little X-Factor is really dangerous because you could be dominating the whole game and then they will just have one moment of brilliance.”

And this from a team that again, in the words of Kellond-Knight, hasn’t yet reached it’s full potential.

“We’re so far off our potential. If we can get all 11 players playing at a 9 out of 10, then we’re going to be really strong team in this comp.”

Sweden for their part, stuck to their guns, holding their almost militant structure throughout the game.

Where other teams have panicked and lacked focus, Sweden were resolute in their game plan even though the situation was almost dire for them.

A loss would certainly send them home and a draw may not have been good enough (it was).

Throughout it all I wanted to see more from them. I wanted to see Sweden trying harder. I wanted to see more emotion, perhaps even some loss of control to illustrate how much it meant to them.

I didn’t get a glimpse of any of that.

What I did see was a professional team. They didn’t panic.

In much the same way as the Matildas, they had faith in themselves and the journey in front of them.

With the 1-1 result, there was no winner. No three points to add to either teams’ tally. But in reality there were many winners.

Australia for delivering what no-one thought they could and exciting many at home and around the world.

Sweden, because they ultimately made their way through to the Round of 16 with three draws to their credit.

And of course, the biggest winner of all, Women’s football itself.

This World Cup, as with the last, is getting more people interested, actively interested. Let’s hope it can be maintained.