The ‘psychic’ penguins at Sydney’s Sea Life Aquarium have predicted that Australia will win their upcoming second match in the FIFA Women’s World Cup against Nigeria.
The Gentoo penguins at Sea Life Sydney have a 100% accuracy rate, after a single correct prediction that Australia would beat Ireland last Thursday. The Matildas came away 1-0, and the penguins are hoping to repeat their psychic prowess with this Thursday’s match.
Keepers held Australian and Nigerian flags in front of the penguins, and the birds made their choice by kicking an official Women’s World Cup football in the direction of the Aussie flag.
If you’re someone who enjoys a flutter, the smart money right now would have to be on Australia after such a solid endorsement. Psychic abilities aside, the Matildas are very much the bookies favourites to win the upcoming game.
Major sporting events have a long and proud tradition of psychic animals predicting the winners. It’s only fitting that the Australia New Zealand 2023 Women’s World Cup has its own psychic animals.
Psychic animals predicting match outcomes is a bizarre tradition that began at the 2010 FIFA World Cup when Paul the German octopus correctly predicted the outcome of all eight of Germany’s matches. Since then, we’ve seen Taiyo the psychic otter, Marcus the mystic pig, and Camilla the clairvoyant camel.
In the Harbour City, the nation’s home of football, the penguins have been tasked with the all-important job of predicting if the Matilda’s will prevail. The penguins will be making predictions on the outcome of each of the women’s national football teams’ games throughout the tournament.
The choice of the animals was inspired by the selection of the penguin Tazuni being named the official mascot of the Women’s World Cup. Tazuni – named after the Tasman Sea and the word ‘unity’ – is a ‘Eudyptula minor’ species of penguin native to Australia and New Zealand.
Vanja Jugovic, Penguin Keeper at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium, has said the penguins will be lending their mystic abilities to the Matildas throughout the tournament
“We’re so excited for our Gentoo penguins to play their part in helping Aussies predict whether the CommBank Matildas will prevail on the pitch,” Jugovic said.
“We’re certain our little helpers put their best-webbed foot forward when backing our Matildas to win!”
It’s unclear whether one penguin in particular has more psychic ability than others or if their powers derive from a hive-mind effect, but the prediction appears to be a group effort.
Australia will have to wait until the evening of Thursday, 20 July to find out if the penguins can pull off a two for two prediction. The Matildas will be playing their second game at 8pm (AEST) at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium.
If you’re looking for the best place to watch the games across the country, we’ve got you covered here.