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Sliema edge past Birżebbuġa as Marsaskala win at a canter

Sliema and Birżebbuġa were the protagonists yesterday as they put up a sporting battle which in the end went the way of Sliema, 13-11.

In the first session, two five-metre throws by Dmitri Kholod kept Sliema’s head above the water against Birżebbuġa.

Pierre Borg’s side remained on the heels of Sliema in the opening period which saw the Blues trailing 2-1 before they made leeway to open a 3-2 lead.

By contrast, Sliema were clinical in the second session with Zach Mizzi scoring a brace as their stringent press unsettled the Southseasiders. This resulted in a 5-2 advantage to change ends 7-4 ahead.

Birżebbuġa were a revitalised lot in the third session, netting twice through Balazs Erdelyi and Jacob Sciberras early in the session and eventually made it 8-7.

At this point, the session produced cat-and-mouse fare with Birżebbuġa chasing Sliema, only to fall three goals behind at the end of the third session with Jayden Cutajar coming to Sliema’s rescue.

Liam Galea opened a four-goal gap at the start of the final quarter. But not for long as Birżebbuġa pulled two goals back, with Erdelyi and Jacob Sciberras for a final score of 13-11.

In the first match, Marsaskala had it all their own way against Barracudas, running up the highest score so far and punishing the northenders almost at will to keep their slim chances of playing in the Premier Division alive.

It was more of a casual training session for Bence Batori and his clan with the hapless Barracudas conceding goals at regular interval and rarely posing any danger for the Marsascala custodian. 

The southseasiders were in uncompromising mood as goals could count in their bid to turn tables on Marsaxlokk and clinch the last berth of the Premier Division.

For statistical purposes, Batori hit 11 goals while Mark Carani scored nine goals.

In the match that followed Neptunes did not emulate Marsascala scorewise but were equally dominant as they churned out most of the goals in the second and third sessions.

Neptunes eased past Ta’ Xbiex in confident fashion with their chief marksman Stevie Camilleri helping himself to six goals.

Most of the Reds’ conversions came in the middle sessions. But Neptunes’ potency emerged throughout as they ripped apart their opponents’ defensive shield with ease, either on breaks or man-ups.

At least Ta’ Xbiex halted their progress downward slide in the last session when they only came off the worst by two goals in six.



(1-5, 2-6, 3-6, 2-4)

TA’ XBIEX: M. Vassallo, N. Schiavone, L. Montebello 1, L. Grech Carr, K. Grech, R. Mock, J. Saliba, C. Milakovic, U. Vasic 3, J.Culic, Z. Bartolo, J. Farrugia, G. Galea Curmi, M. Ortoleva 2, K. Agius 1.

NEPTUNES: A. Borg Cole, J. Muscat 4, S. Gialanze 2, G. Pace 2, M. Castillo 2, J. Bajada, S. Camilleri 6, J. Camilleri 2, F. Filipovic 3, A. Fenech, E. Mallia, M. Rossi, D. Bugeja.

Refs Massimo Angileri, Matteo Giacchini.



(8-1, 6-0, 8-2, 7-0)

MARSASKALA: J. Micallef, JC. Cutajar, G. Galea, P. Privitera, R. Greco, F. Salamon 5, K, Navarro 1, D. Tully, D. Pace Lupi 2, G. Sammut, J. Ciantar, M. Carani 9, A. Muscat, B. Batori 11, F. Scardino.

BARRACUDAS: I. Schembri, S. Debono Grech, A. Magri, P. Micallef, D. Ciantar 1, R. Sciortino, I. Gusarov 1, R. Latinovic 1, C. Bugeja, S. Apap, A. Mifsud, TJ Mifsud, M. Borg, T. Perici Ferrante, W. Ruggier.

Refs Ronnie Spiteri, Riccardo D’Antoni.

SLIEMA          13

BIRŻEBBUĠA            11

(3-2, 5-2, 3-4, 2-3)

SLIEMA: N. Grixti, J. Gabarretta, L. Galea 2, J. Gambin, Z. Mizzi 2, B. Cachia 1, J. Cutajar 2, M. Mifsud, J. Brownrigg 1, D. Kholod 4, A. Prlainovic 1, D. Zammit, A. Bugeja, E. Schembri

BIRŻEBBUĠA: M. Sladden, P. Borg 1, N. Cassar, B. Grech, D. Brguljan 1, M. Manara, R. Spiteri, D. Cutajar, B. Erdeyi 4, K. Tanti 1, G. Mannino 1, M. Curmi, C. Borg, J. Sciberras 3, D. Farrugia.

Refs Peter Balzan, Riccardo D’Antoni.

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