Penalties after Sliema v Neptunes drama

Saturday, July 10, 2010, 21:57

by Sandro Micallef.

Sliema and Neptunes shared the spoils and earned a point each in the last game of the Preliminary round of the BOV National Water polo League, but the afternoon saw Sliema lift the President’s Cup after extra time and penalties had to be taken to determine a winner. It was surely a pleasant afternoon for the hundreds that attended the National Pool and was worth every euro spent for their admission ticket as the game was just superb.

Sliema's Bogdan Rath firing home one of his goals

Sliema's Bogdan Rath firing home one of his goals

Watch short clip: Sliema v Neptunes clip 1

Watch short clip: Sliema v Neptunes clip 2

Watch short clip: Sliema v Neptunes clip 3

Neptunes started off on a high, opening an encouraging 4-1 lead in the first session with some fine water polo with goals by Lanzon, Jordan Camilleri and two by Steve Camilleri. John Soler had earlier momentarily equalized 1-1 from a man up situation.

The second period saw Sliema clawing their way back into the game come when they won the session 3-2 with two goals from Bogdan Rath (one from a penalty) and another goal from Daniel Paolella, whilst the Balluta scorers were Vujasinovic and Steve Camilleri.

After half time there was absolute balance between the two teams in the water, with some emotional and tense instances, ending the session with a 2-2 draw,  with Neptunes goals coming from Tamas Molnar and Jordan Camilleri with the Blues replying through Soler and Aliosa Kunac to make the score 8-6 in Neptunes’ favour. The end of this session saw Sliema missing a golden opportunity to go only one goal down when Paul Privitera missed an easy ball from position 3 from a man up situation.

With Neptunes always with three or two goals up no one imagined such an exciting end to this game when Sliema managed to draw level with the Balluta team by winning the the last session 3-1. Neptunes were already demoralised when Privitera made up for his previous mistake by scording  from another man up situation to close the gap to only one goal to 8-7. Vujasinovic scored the only goal for Markoc’s side with Sliema making the impossible happen when Bogdan Rath made them 9-8 and with only two seconds from time Aliosa Kunac leveled the score on 9-9 with both teams winning a point in the table but conscious that they had to play extra time for the President’s Cup.

The two extra time sessions of three minutes each continued to offer spectacle to the passionate fans at the Pool. Both teams could not continue to use their best players since a number of them were fouled out, namely David Camilleri, Jordan Camilleri, Sean Gravina and Niki Lanzon for Neptunes and Privitera along with Paolella for Sliema.

For the first time in the match Sliema went a goal up with Rath making the score 10-9 but Neptunes quickly equalized through Steve Camilleri from the five meter penalty mark. The last three minutes of this never ending game witnessed no less than four goals. Referees Dalli and Bianco awarded a penalty to each team converted by Molnar and Rath (later fouled out) respectively. Some 20 seconds from time Mark Meli scored from a man up situation and put Sliema again in front 12-11. As the Neptunes fans were finding their way out Steve Camilleri equalised with a long range shot with two seconds left on the clock for a final 12-12 score.

We then proceeded with penalties in order to determine a winner with Neptunes’ Vujasinovic and Stellini missing, while Soler missed for Sliema. Therefore the fifth and last penalty for Sliema, taken by Brownrigg, was the deciding shot which was successfully taken to the joy and amusement of Afric and all the Sliema clan.

For our exclusive image gallery of this encounter click here

Final Score (after ET and Penalties)
Neptunes Emirates 15
Sliema McDonalds 16

Line Ups
Neptunes Emirates
N.Gouder, N.Lanzon, B.Lanzon, M.Stellini, D.Camilleri, V.Vujasinovic, S.Camilleri, J.Camilleri, B.Buhagiar, S.Gravina, Z.Mizzi, T.Molnar, M.Pisani

Sliema McDonalds
R.Coleiro, J.Calabretta, N.Lubrano, P.Privitera, M.Meli, J.Soler, D.Paolella, J.Brownigg, C.Debono, A.Kunac, M.Rizzo, B.Rath, A.Bianchi

In the meantime in yesterday’s encounter between San Giljan and Sirens the Balluta side led by Marco Riso won 18-14. San Giljan also were awarded the Sports Journalists Cup which was presented by GħĠS Vice President Mr. Simon Bonello.


  1. JJG says:

    Prosit Sliema !!!! I am very happy sliema have won maybe Neptunes can be put back in their place and their heads can come back down to normal size again. Best foreigner in the world and the great steve camilleri …. but still cant beat sliema… haha before the match neptunes supporters were discussing by how much they were going to win by not whether or not they were going to win…what a joke!!!!! Having the single best player doesnt mean much when you are playing against a team…maybe the steve camilleri supporters will finally learn a lesson… ax ajjejtuna…’


  2. Nettuno says:

    Neptunes were again in benevolent mood having ironically some of their best players among others, missing, arguably, easy chances, Vujasinovic (twice) and Molnar (twice) among the culprits. Never mind it was an acceptable performance by the Boys in red and they showed they are the best this season.


  3. richard pace says:

    A very nice game indeed I am pleased that sliema won they will also win the league I think … Richartd


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