Champions Hibernians had mixed luck this week where they gained their ninth consecutive win in the FXDD Premier Division but eventually failed to convince in the Knock-Out competition.
In the FXDD Premier League, Hibs defeated a well-organized San Gwann side 5-4. There was drama towards the end of the game as the score was 4-4, 1.30 seconds from the end and it looked as if Hibernians were going to drop the first points. But Cedric Sciberras notched the winner to give his side a hard-fought victory that kept them joint-first in the table with Luxol ahead of the clash with Balzan.
Luxol found no difficulty to beat Birzebbuga St. Peter’s 10-2 and register their ninth consecutive victory. Luxol dominated, scoring nine goals in the first half. Player-coach Florin Anton was the best player of the match after scoring a brace and masterminding his team with clear passes and good leadership.
Balzan quickly replied to their rivals’ success after dominating Vittoriosa Stars 10-2 to clinch their eighth consecutive victory. Glenn Bonello scored a hat-trick, Andrea Dan and Jovica Milijic scored a brace while Giancarlo Sammut, Zeljko Anicic and Rennie Tanti completed the mission for Balzan.
Pembroke Athleta climbed fourth in the table after seeing off Zurrieq 7-2. Two days later, the latter side beat Luqa St. Andrew’s 6-4 in the derby to move one place in the table and register the third success of the season.
Hamrun Spartans stunned Qormi by winning 8-0. It was an impressive performance by the Spartans who climbed sixth in the table to reach Melita. Elamari proved to be Hamrun’s hero when he scored four goals.
Mosta defeated Swieqi United 8-4 to move ninth. Their goals were scored from Ryan Buhagiar (4 goals), George Douglas Saliba (2 goals) and a goal for Armando Gjepali and Darryl Schembri.
In the FXDD First Division, Kalkara defeated Siggiewi 3-1 to join sixth-placed Fgura United and Zebbug Rangers with 16 points. Kevin Loughborough, Duncan Bonello and Karl Muscat scored the all-important goals for the Kalkara side.
Meanwhile in the FXDD Knock-Out, Zabbar beat all odds as they eliminated champions Hibernians after a 5-4 scoreline. It was an exceptional performance from the Zabbar team that played aggressively from the first seconds of the match to stun the league leaders. Hibernians made a quick reaction to make the score 4-2 before half-time. In the second half, Hibs scored another goal to make it 4-3 but Zabbar did not lose their concentration, kept their cool and scored the fifth goal. After this goal, the Paolites put everything on the offensive and began a series of attacks to try and level the score. Zabbar defended bravely to obtain a hard fought win and book a place for the next round of this competition.
In the other Knock-Out match, Vittoriosa Stars saw off Melita 7-4 to qualify for the next round of the competition. Vittoriosa’s goals came from two braces by Luke Stivala and Sean Vella with Leandros Calleja, Kenneth Spiteri and Melvin Xuereb scoring a goal each.
Photo: Copyright © Joe Borg