Birkirkara made it three wins in a row as they overcame the challenge offered by Hamrun Spartans, beating them 2-1 at the National Stadium on Sunday.
Hamrun therefore suffered the first defeat after a win and a draw in the first two matches but gave a good account on themselves against a team that had impressed in their first outings.
The Spartans had five changes from the team which drew with Gzira as Massimiliano Giusti, Sergio Raphael dos Anjos Raphael, Leandro Wallace Motta dos Santos, Jorge Mesqueu Neto and Haruna Garba replaced Luke Grech, Mark Anthony Borg, Patrick Teixeira, Jean Pierre Mifsud Triganza and Ryan Spiteri in the starting line-up with Spiteri moving to Sliema Wanderers before the transfer deadine. On the other hand, Ryan Scicluna replaced Matthew Guillaumier for Birkirkara.
Birkirkara managed to take the lead on the 12th minute when Cain Attard concluded a good run on the right with a low shot from a close angle which beat goalkeeper David Cassar.
Hamrun levelled matters six minutes from the end of the first half when Haruna Garba, served by Leandro Motta, avoided Nikola Vukanac’s marking and hit past goalkeeper Miroslav Kopric.
The Stripes however regained the lead twelve minutes from time when off a cross by Frank Temile, substitute James Brincat slotted the ball past the Hamrun goalkeeper.[gallery_bank type=”images” format=”masonry” title=”true” desc=”false” responsive=”true” display=”all” sort_by=”pic_id” animation_effect=”bounce” album_title=”true” album_id=”12″]
B’KARA Miroslav Kopric, Gareth Sciberras, Mislav Andelkovic, Srdjan Dimitrov (76′ James Brincat), Vito Plut, Nikola Vukanac, Frank Temile, Joseph Zerafa, Ryan Scicluna (66′ Shaun Pierre Bajada), Cain Attard, Predrag Jovic (82′ Steve Bonnici).
Subs not used: Ini Etim Akpan, Edward Herrera, Matthew Guillaumier, Rowen Muscat.
Coach: Drazen Besek
HAMRUN David Cassar, Philip Chircop, Glenn Azzopardi, Haruna Garba Zambuk, Sergio Raphael dos Anjos Raphael, Luke Sciberras, Massimiliano Giusti, Leandro Wallace Motta dos Santos (76′ Jean Pierre Mifsud Triganza), Jake Grech, Jorge Mesqueu Neto, Saturday Nanapere (84′ Daren Falzon).
Subs not used: Matthew Farrugia, Mark Anthony Borg, Luke Grech, Rodney Refalo, Christian Maldini.
Coach: Steve D’Amato
Referee: Malcolm Spiteri
Assistant Referees: Luke Portelli, Martin Borg
Fourth Official: Glen Tonna
Yellow Cards: Plut, Jovic, Giusti, Sciberras, Raphael
BOV Player of the Match: Cain Attard