The Malta Independent 23 July 2019, Tuesday

Waterpolo, BOV Summer League: Petkovic instrumental in Birżebbuġa’s comeback

Stewart Said Tuesday, 18 June 2019, 22:12 Last update: about 2 months ago

BIRŻEBBUĠA FREEPORT................ 18

MARSASKALA FISH AND FISH........ 17

(4-5), (3-3), (4-5), (7-4)

A fantastic comeback from Birżebbuġa Freeport helped them to clinch their first of this season, three points that will prove to be vital in the second phase of the league. Marsaskala Fish and Fish had a decent game but failed to hold on their lead in a match that they led for several moments.

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All four foreigners had their say in the game and changed the encounter saveral times. Kristijan Milakovic and Konstantin Averka scored six goals each for Marsaskala while Antonio Petkovic and Balint Lorincz scored ten goals between them for Birżebbuġa.

Marsaskala had a 4-1 advantage but Birżebbuġa equalised with three goals in less than two and a half minutes until Daniel Borg Millo scored late in the first session. Pierre Borg's team were better in the second session and their concentration resulted in a goal advantage till half the second session. But a brace by Milakovic kept Marsaskala with their noses in front.

Dorian Pisani's team tried several times to open up a two-goal lead but Birżebbuġa stayed in the game. Averka and Malcolm Manara put Marsaskala 13-10 in the lead until Antonio Petkovic lobbed over Jurgen Micallef with less than a minute before the end of the third session.

Averka scored after 20 seconds from the beginning of the last session. Despite being three goals behind, Birżebbuġa reacted and turned the tables in less than three minutes. The game kept going back and forth till the last seconds of the game as Birżebbuġa preserved their slender lead.

Birżebbuġa: D. Spiteri, M. Borg, N. Cassar (2), D. Pace Lupi, C. Mifsud (1), A. Petkovic (6), S. Vassallo, D. Cutajar (1), J. Bajada (2), M. Cutajar, B. Lorincz (4), M. Ortoleva (2), J. Cremona

Marsaskala: J. Micallef, J.C. Cutajar, A. Camenzuli, M. Manara (1), M. Aquilina, L. Grixti, K. Navarro (2), K. Milakovic (6), K. Averka (6), J. Culic (1), R. Attard, D. Borg Millo (1), M. Borg, L. Felice, J. Ciantar

Referees: Peter Balzan, Andrea Barletta

 

SIRENS GREENTUBE.......... 21

OTTERS NIVEA.................. 14

(6-3), (7-2), (4-3), (3-6)

Sirens Greentube are at the moment on top of Group B as they easily disposed of Otters Nivea. The end result doesn't give an exact picture of how the game progressed as Otters scored four goals late in the game to cut the deficit. Sirens dominated the first part of the game and finished the second session with a commanding 13-5 lead.

As they did in their opening game against Marsaxlokk, Christian Presciutti and Valentino Gallo were again their chief scorers scoring between them no less than 15 goals between after another nine goals scored last Friday.

Both Italian players already scored a hat-trick each in the first session as Sirens won the first session 6-3. As if it wasn't already an indication, Sirens assured themselves of the win in the second session. They had a seven-goal advantage midway through the session.

Otters kept playing their game in the other two sessions but it was until Sirens decided to reduce their rhythm that they were a bit in the game. This was also due to the decision by Sirens coach Sasko Popovski to rotate the squad as much as possible.

Despite this rotation, Otters only limited the damage and it was only in the last two and a half minutes that the Gozitan side scored four consecutive goals to reduce the deficit. Edward Aquilina scored a cheeky goal for Sirens in the last second

Sirens: N. Grixti, J. Zerafa Gregory, C. Presciutti (8), P. Privitera, M. Grech, G. Melillo, I. Riolo (2), V. Gallo (7), J. Napier, E. Aquilina (3), L. Caruana, M. Sciberras (1), G. Galea Curmi, L. Falzon, G. Farrugia

Otters: M. Xerri, C. Spiteri Debarro, F. Salamon (3), L. Hyzler (1), E. Meli (1), M. Lanzon (1), K. Scicluna, G. Mizzi, A. Mifsud, D. Zahra (3), B. Lanzon, M. Filipovic (5), D. Camilleri, D. Dimech, C. Teuma

Referees: Alex De Raffaele, Massimo Calabrò


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