Holders Floriana were eliminated from the U*BET FA Trophy as a penalty by Clayton Failla four minutes from time gave Hibernians a narrow win in a quarter-final clash.
The Paolites were slightly better than their opponenents but seemed unable to break the deadlock.
Bjorn Kristensen was back for Hibernians after missing the last league game while Christian Cassar was named in the starting line-up for the Greens although he left the pitch injured after just twenty minutes.
Hibernians created the first goal scoring opportunity with a diagonal shot by Tarabai ending just wide on 29 minutes.
Two minutes in the second half, goalkeeper Patrick Jansen blocked a Tarabai effort and a minute later, Bjorn Kristensen tried his luck with a shot from the edge of the area which was deflected into a corner by the Dutch goalkeeper.
Floriana replied with a Pablo Doffo freekick from the left on 56 minutes from which Joseph Borg hit just wide. An Edward Herrera rising shot just missed the target two minutes later.
On 67 minutes, off a cross from the left, Tarabai’s close-range shot was blocked by Jansen and off the rebound, Aaron Xuereb’s header was blocked by Manolito Micallef.
Five minutes from time, Hibs were awarded a penalty after Eric Akoto brought Tarabai down inside the area. From the penalty spot, Clayton Failla converted.
In added time, Hibernians could have added another when Edward Herrera sent Edison Luis dos Santos through but goalkeeper Patrick Jansen neutralised the latter’s conclusion.
HIBS Mario Muscat, Edward Herrera, Aaron Xuereb, Rodolfo Soares, Jonathan Pearson, Clayton Failla, Andrew Cohen, Jackson Lima Siqueira, Marcelo Dias (71′ Jason Vandelannoite), Bjorn Kristensen, Edison Luis dos Santos.
Subs not used: Nicholas Grima, Steve Pisani, Adrian Pulis, Johann Bezzina, Keith Tanti, Ayrton Azzopardi.
Coach: Mark Miller
Asst. Coach: Richard Mercieca
FLORIANA Patrick Jansen, Christian Cassar (20′ Thomas Paris), Alandson da Silva (87′ Andre Grabowski), Joseph Borg (73′ Ryan Darmanin), Duncan Pisani, Ivan Woods, Christian Caruana, Manolito Micallef, Pablo Doffo, Owen Bugeja, Eric Akoto.
Subs not used: Manuel Bartolo, John Mintoff, Malcolm Licari, Clyde Borg.
Coach: Michael Woods
Asst. Coach: Frank Schembri
Referee: Marco Borg
Assistant Referees: Ingmar Spiteri, Thomas Debono
Fourth Official: Adrian Azzopardi
Yellow Cards: Caruana, Dias, Akoto, Micallef, Kristensen, Woods
Scorers: 86′ Clayton Failla (pen)
Meanwhile Qormi were the first team to reach the semi-finals of the U*BET FA Trophy after defeating First Division leaders Pietà Hotspurs 1-0 after extra-time.
The team led by Stephen Azzopardi held the initiative for long stretches but failed to convert their chances into goals with the Hotspurs, who had defeated two Premier League sides – Tarxien Rainbows and Marsaxlokk – in the previous two rounds, forcing extra-time.
Qormi lacked Roderick Sammut and Nigerian striker Abubakar Bello-Osagie while Ezequiel Giaccaglia Belzuz and Vinicius Pereira dos Santos were missing for the Hotspurs.
After a quiet start, Qormi had the first attempt at goal on 28 minutes when Jorge Pereira da Silva advanced into the area but his low shot was blocked by Miguel Montfort. The Hotspurs replied with a freekick by Jonathan Bilbao Zarate ending just wide on 35 minutes.
Four minutes in the second half, the Pietà goalkeeper neutralised a Joseph Farrugia freekick from the left. Two consecutive shots by Terence Agius were blocked by Montfort and off the rebound, Adrian Farrugia hit high on 54 minutes. Two minutes later, Jorginho concluded a solo effort with a low shot which was parried by Montfort. On 62 minutes, the Pietà goalkeeper blocked a Matthew Bartolo close-range effort and off the rebound, Jorge Pereira hit incredibly high.
Joseph Farrugia was unlucky to hit the crossbar with a shot from outside the area on 79 minutes.
With no goals being scored, the game went into extra-time.
Thirteen minutes in the first half of extra-time, Jorge Pereira da Silva controlled the ball on the edge of the area but his beautiful overhead kick was turned into a corner.
The game seemed heading for the penalty shoot-out but on the 120th minute, substitute Caio Garcia Suguino broke the deadlock for Qormi when he received a cross by Bondin from the right and controlled the ball before hitting past Montfort.
PIETÀ Miguel Montfort, Clive Spiteri, Bernard Sciberras, Terence Agius (85′ Carl Cutajar), Zach Muscat (90+2′ Cain Attard), Larson Mallia, Cleaven Cassar, Jonathan Bilbao Zarate, Jurgen Pisani, Ismael Grech, Adrian Farrugia (77′ Jonathan Holland).
Subs not used: Carlos Dimech, Shaun Micallef, Christian Grech, Matthew Schembri.
Coach: Edmond Lufi
Asst. Coach: Jean Paul Desira
QORMI Matthew Farrugia, Matthew Bartolo (64′ Stephen Wellman), Joseph Chetcuti (98′ Kenneth Scicluna), Joseph Farrugia, Luke Sciberras, Federico Mirarchi (64′ Caio Garcia Suguino), Jonathan Bondin, Jorge da Silva Pereira, Kris Thackray, Triston Caruana, Vincent Kouadio Adioumani.
Subs not used: Steve Sultana, Carmelo Farrugia, George Chircop, Ranier Buhagiar.
Coach: Stephen Azzopardi
Referee: Chris Lautier
Assistant Referees: William Debattista, Chris Francalanza
Fourth Official: Trustin Farrugia Cann
Yellow Cards: Thackray, Cassar
Scorers: 120′ Caio Garcia Suguino