Poor start costs Exiles

Exiles Jetfreight 7 Sliema 9

Partial scores (1-5) (2-1) (1-2) (3-1)

A false start by Exiles had its toll on the final score when they met Sliema yesterday evening in the first match of the second round of this year’s Premier Waterpolo League with Blues edging our boys by two goals at the final horn.

By the end of the first session, neighbours Sliema were in the driving seat as they piled five consecutive goals against a solitary one by Exiles potted by Michele Stellini to practically wrap up the proceedings. The goals suffered by Dorian Pisani’s boys were breaks by the Blues’ players who ripped open the Exiles defence. The Exiles’ attacks were sterile and never dangerous to their opponents’ fort and the few shots at goal found the Sliema keeper in control.

At the half-way mark, Exiles reduced the gap to three goals (3-6) but in the third quarter, Sliema increased the gap to five goals (8-3) before a conversion of a man-up situation for Exiles by Nicky Paris saw the session ending 8-4.

Four minutes into the final session saw Exiles convert another man-up this time by Slobo Nikic before another goal by Andrea Bianchi, forced Sliema coach Bogdan Rath to call a time-out 2.25 to the end with the score reading 8-6 in favour of our opponents. On resumption of play, a backhand by ‘Willie” Molinas surprised the Exiles’ rear-guard to practically seal the issue (9-6) but a third consecutive conversion by Julian Rizzo Naudi for Exiles narrowed the gap once again to two with 62 seconds to the end.

A more concentrated approach to the match including that final accurate pass to centre Nikic who obtained the bulk of the opponents’ exclusions were, to observers at the Pool, the downfall of an overall improved outing.

For the record, Exiles had nine man-up situations including a double exclusion and converted four of them. Sliema missed all the four man-ups at their disposal.

Coach Dorian Pisani and his assistant Matthew Pisani, made use of eleven players on the team list: Matthew Castillo, Julian Rizzo Naudi (1 goal), Michele Stellini (1 goal), Timmy Sullivan (1 goal), Jake Bajada, Slobodan Nikic (1 goal), Kurt Griscti, Nicky Paris (1 goal), Andrea Bianchi (1 goal), Benji lanzon and Luca Felice (1 goal).


Next match sees Exiles Jetfreight meet Sirens on Wednesday 5th July at 20.00 hours in what is considered to be an interesting encounter.




picture by Adrian Farrugia shows Kurt Griscti (blue cap 8) tackling a Sliema player in the second part of yesterday’s match



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