PORTLAND, Ore. — Few have accomplished what Christine Sinclair has in international soccer. In an accomplished career, filled with awards, honors and titles, the Thorns FC striker and captain achieved yet another historic milestone, earning her 200th cap for the Canada Women’s National Team.
The most capped player – either men’s or women’s – to ever wear the jersey for Canada, Sinclair made her 200th appearance on Thursday, scoring a second-half goal and leading her country to a 2-0 win over Scotland in the opening match of the Torneio Internacional de Futebol Feminino on a hot, humid night down in Brazil; her goal, the 147th in international play.
“I think she’s got probably another 200 more in her,” said John Herdman, head coach of the Canada Women’s National Team, on Sinclair’s milestone. “That’s the exciting thing.”
So, how does it feel to reach No. 200?
“It makes me feel old,” said Sinclair jokingly in an interview with CanadaSoccer.com in the days leading up to Thursday’s match. “It’s a huge honor, and it seems like just yesterday I was playing in my first cap in Portugal. I just can’t believe it has come to this.”
Sinclair’s international career began at the age of 16, earning her first senior cap in the Algarve Cup against China on March 12, 2000. A fierce competitor, she has been an ever-steady presence for Canada’s national team over the last 14 years, making more appearances and scoring more goals than any player. Inducted into the Canada Walk of Fame in 2013, Sinclair, now 30, was named the 2013 BMO Canadian Player of the Year on Friday – her 11th Canadian Player of the Year honor.
While a career moment for Sinclair, Canada’s captain displayed her humility and talked about the importance of the night for whole team.
“The win felt incredible, I think that was the most important thing that came out of today,” said Sinclair after the match against Scotland. “Not only the victory, but just the way our team played. That is the best we’ve played all year; so it’s coming together.”
And the Thorns FC contingent for Canada did its part, with Sinclair scoring a goal and goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc going the full 90 and earning the shutout.
Canada closes out its 2013 calendar with the Torneio Internacional de Futebol Feminino and faces Chile next in the competition on Sunday.