Win slips from our hands

Exiles 11 Sirens 14

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

Last night Exiles lost its last chance to avoid finishing at the bottom of this year’s Premier League when they failed to beat the nearest opponents in the table Sirens. It’s true that there is another round of four matches but  in my view, it will be impossible to avoid the last place.

It was a match in which our lads gave their best but it was not enough. They had a perfect start after trailing one goal which was conceded after the referees caught  Radovic blocking an opponent to suffer a counter attack and goal whilst the boys were still taking up their positions for their first attack of the game. Three consecutive conversions of man-up situations. Usual changes in the team were made but proved ineffective as a relaxed patch saw Sirens nosing ahead to win the session 4-3.

The second and third sessions were balanced with both teams trying to push away to build unassailable leads. The final  quarter saw Sirens make their final burst with their Babay scoring a poker ( including two penalties) to pocket the three valuable points for his team. The boys could have saved the match  90 seconds to the final horn when two Sirens players were expelled but Exiles failed to capitalize to bridge the gap to one goal.

From the stands, one could notice that our opponents made use of just nine players. I am sure that our team has a stronger and valid bench. Yet these could have been more utilized throughout the match seeing that some players performed below their usual expectations.

In our build ups, there were times when no player turned to receive the first pass from our goal keeper.What was evident again was the lack of accuracy in the long passing. It’s better to hold on to the ball rather than give a wrong pass to your opponents – this happened on three occasions and they cost us dearly.

In man-down situations the team avoided goals on five occasions and conceded three goals. Sirens were awarded three penalties which were all converted.

Exiles scored an excellent seven of their ten man-ups but the missed crucial one we desperately needed to convert. This was 90 seconds to the final horn when Sirens suffered a double exclusion but we failed to bridge the gap to one goal. Sasha Radovic missed a penalty in the third session when the score read 8-9 in favour of the Northerners.

Coach Cousin made use of the following players: Ian Bugeja,  Julian Rizzo Naudi, Simon Vassallo, David Pace Lupi (1 goal) Nicky Portelli, Sasha Radovic (4 goals), James Spiteri Staines, Voja Cupic, Kurt Griscti, Peter Borg (2 goals), Diego Borg, Kayne Lanzon (Picture) (4 goals).


Next Fixture against Neptunes on Tuesday 6th August at the National Pool at 19.15 hours






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