The Malta Independent 11 August 2022, Thursday

Waterpolo: San Ġiljan open six-point lead as Sliema lose against Sirens

Stewart Said Saturday, 24 June 2017, 06:12 Last update: about 6 years ago

SAN ĠILJAN TUM INVEST.........12

VALLETTA UNITED......................6

(1-1), (4-2), (3-2), (4-1)

League leaders San Ġiljan Tum Invest took advantage of the defeat of Sliema as they stretched their lead to six points by defeating Valletta United 12-6. It was a deserved win for San Ġiljan as they were the better team through the whole game, but they weren’t spectacular.

ADVERTISEMENT

Credit goes also to Valletta who despite losing their all previous games in the league, had probably the best performance so far, and they were still in the game in the third session.

The first session ended 1-1 as Mark Fenech responded to Peter Borg’s opener. San Ġiljan scored twice to go 3-1 in front, an advantage that put them in a position to control the game better, and which they kept till the end of the second session with a 5-3 scoreline.

Daniel Paolella reduced the margin to one goal, as Valletta were believing that they could take out something from this game, but Cousin scored again, until Mark Fenech made the score 6-5. The important moment of the game happened about one minute and a half from the end of the session, as Serbian Boris Vapenski was fouled-out, and from the resulting action, Matthew Zammit made it 7-5. A few seconds later Cousin scored another goal to practically secure the game.

Paul Fava added another in the beginning of the last session and Ivovic added another one. Mock scored the sixth goal from the centre for Valletta, but there was still time for young Ben Plumpton to score a quick brace in the last moments.

San Ġiljan: J. Tanti, P. Borg (1), A. Galea (1), B. Grech, J. Galea, M. Zammit (1), B. Plumpton (2), D. Zammit, A. Ivovic (2), A. Cousin (4), P. Fava (1), D. Zammit, T. Micallef

Valletta: R. Sciortino, J. Spiteri Staines, A. Agius, M. Rizzo, M. Fenech (2), R. Mock (1), D. Paolella (1), N. Bonello Ghio, M. Cordina, B. Vapenski (2), K. Galea, D. Fenech, A. Mifsud

Referees: Danilo Coluccio, Ronnie Spiteri

 

SLIEMA FRANK SALT................6

SIRENS ASC..................................7

(1-1), (0-2), (3-3), (2-1)

Sliema Frank Salt suffered a big blow in their quest to challenge for the title as they beaten by the ever improving Sirens side 7-6. Mastered by the veteran coach Sergio Afric, Sirens deserved the full points as they remained concentrated especially in the hot moments of the game, with Sliema always having to recover.

The pressure seemed to pile up on Sliema who started as favourites before the game after their recent positive performances. But after their good start, the level of performance by Sliema started to fall, and this permitted their opponents to level the score and eventually take the lead.

Sliema went in front from Jerome Gabarretta, but Sirens turned the game, first from a goal by John Brownrigg, and then from Presciutti and again Brownrigg in the second session to go to the interval 3-1 in front. In this comeback, Sirens transformed into an impermeable team, with Sliema failing to find the net.

With two goals adrift, Sliema were always fighting to get back the lead they had in the first minutes of the game, but despite scoring three goals, Sirens always responded after each to keep their two-goal cushion. To make matters worse for Sliema, they lost their captain Mark Meli after protesting with the referee.

Cluett reduced the gap with a goal early in the last session, and after Napier scored for Sirens, Cluett scored a good goal. Sliema continued to push to at least save a point from the game, and despite having some chances, they failed to be dangerous enough to goalkeeper Nicholas Grixti as Sirens stayed tactically perfect to win a very important match.

Sliema: R. Coleiro, J. Gabarretta (2), E. Aquilina (1), C. Cluett (3), G. Molina, K. Dowling, M. Spiteri Staines, M. Mifsud, J. Gambin, M. Meli, Z. Mizzi, N. Bugelli, Z. Sciberras

Sirens: N. Grixti, J. Zerafa Gregory, C. Presciutti (2), J. Sciberras, M. Grech (1), I. Riolo, C. Mercieca (1), D. Cutajar, J. Napier (1), J. Brownrigg (2), L. Caruana, J. Ciantar, O. Gauci

Referees: Mario Dalli, Mauro Luciani

 

MARSASKALA TRANSCRIPTA....11

TA’ XBIEX AMIGOS........................4

(2-0), (2-1), (3-2), (4-1)

Marsascala Transcripta kept their momentum by ending the first round with an expected 11-4 win against Ta’ Xbiex Amigos. As the score line indicates, it was a routine win for Pierre Borg’s team as they easily controlled the game, with their opponents having no resistance to topple up Marsascala’s play.

Marsascala were leading 4-1 till the end of the second session, a low score but they were never in danger of losing the game. They continued to widen the gap in the third session, as they opened a four goal lead with goals coming from Cassar, Busuttil and Navarro. If there was any doubt, they secured the game with three consecutive goals to tally up the score to 10-3, as Vlahovic scored the last goal cancelling the penalty by Spaniard Sziranyi.

Marsaskala: K. Schembri, J.C. Cutajar, N. Farrugia, G. Borg, A. Vlahovic (4), L. Grixti (1), K. Navarro (1), J. Busuttil (1), S. Micallef (1), M. Agius, D. Cassar (2), M. Cutajar (1), B. Dougall

Ta’ Xbiex: J. Micallef, L. Pace, B. Sziranyi (2), E. Carabott, C. Farrugia, K. Mock, (1), K. Tanti, E. Gravina, L. Saliba, M. Pullicino, R. Attard, N. Saliba, M. Pace (1)

Referees: Massimo Angileri, Danilo Coluccio

 

  • don't miss