Raiders Lija advance at the expense of Mtarfa
A different winner will hoist this season’s Assikura Women’s Knock-Out trophy after holders Birkirkara were dumped out by Swieqi United in a nerve-wrecking quarter-final tie at the Victor Tedesco Stadium, on Wednesday night.
The Stripes won the last five editions of this competition but come May 12, a new champion will be crowned for the first time since the 2015/2016 when Hibernians won the tournament.
For Swieqi, this was a much-needed victory after failing to dethrone Birkirkara in the domestic league, having also lost twice in the three matchups in the championship.
Moreover, Birkirkara had beaten the Owls to lift the Super Cup trophy back in December.
Both teams fielded their strongest formation and they could not break the deadlock in regular time as the tie headed into extra-time.
Jessica Dimech grabbed the all important goal early in the second half when her shot beat Birkirkara’s Janice Xuereb to send Swieqi into the final four of the competition.
In addition, this was Birkirkara’s first loss in 82 games since their 2018 Super Cup defeat against Hibernians. They still hold an 87-unbeaten match record in the domestic league, dating back to the 2017/2018 campaign.
Judith Kuipers’ side will face Raiders Lija in Sunday’s final at the Centenary Stadium.
Led by coach Denis Guerra, Raiders broke little sweat to overcome Mtarfa as they won 9-1.
Lexine Farrugia scored a hat-trick while Laura Muscat grabbed a brace. The other goals were recorded by Gaia Antonelli, Hannah Khatib, Monique Sultana and Francesca Bartolo.
Meanwhile, Mtarfa’s only goal was registered by Slavina Peneva.
In another highly-anticipated quarter-final, a Kayleigh Chetcuti’s freekick propelled Hibernians into the semi-finals at the expense of Mġarr United.
Hibernians had failed to beat Mġarr in any of their previous three league encounters but managed to pull off a hard-working victory as they now face San Ġwann in Sunday’s semi-final.
SUNDAY, MAY 7
Raiders Lija vs Swieqi United – Centenary Stadium, 5pm.
Hibernians vs San Ġwann – Victor Tedesco Stadium, 5pm.
MAY 12 (Centenary Stadium, 7pm).
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