The Hockey Association Malta’s first competition came to an end on Sunday with an exhilarating final between GREE Sliema Hs and Qormi DAIKIN. GREE Sliema finally emerged winners in a game decided by a penalty shoot-out. The game, tough but sportingly played, was a testament to the validity of both sides and brought the curtain down on a remarkable run of ten consecutive competitions won by Qormi Daikin. The last time they did not win a competition dates back to the Super Cup Season 2017/2018. Truly an amazing feat.
On Sunday GREE Sliema started on the front foot but it was Qormi Daikin who drew first blood from their first short corner as Steve Portelli fired in an unstoppable flick. The teams were back level in the second quarter with Christ Agius this time on target again from a short corner move. Half time found the teams at 1-1.
GREE Sliema edged ahead in the third quarter this time it was Jonathan Borg who closed a short corner action to put the score at 2-1. The balance of play was shifting towards GREE Sliema as they chalked up a good number of short corners which, however, did not result in any goals mainly due to the fine form of Qormi DAIKIN goal stopper Shamison Mifsud. Qormi Daikin, despite being hampered by a number of temporary suspensions, were not going to let go of their winning streak so easily. Their short corners always remained a threat and almost on the stroke of time, at the end of quarter 4, Juan Sarcia notched his sixth goal of the competition to send the teams to a penalty shoot-out.
At this stage it was GREE Sliema who edged ahead taking the penalty shoot-out 3-2 to make the final score 5-4. Umpires of the game were James Mizzi and Nathan Galea.
After the match both teams were presented with their medals by HAM President Gordon Mifsud while Robert Busutill on behalf of Malta Sports Journalist Association presented the Malta Sports Journalist Association Challenge Cup to the winners.
Before the final White Hart and Young Stars played off for third place. Despite fielding a depleted side White Hart fought bravely to win the game. This match was also decided by a penalty shoot-out. The game in normal time ended 3-3 with David Aguis and Ali Shah (2) scoring for White Hart and Clive Williams, Karl Chircop and Luke Borg Costanzi on the mark for Floriana Young Stars. The penalty shoot-out ended 5-4 for White Hart for the final score of 8-7. Umpires of this game were Paul Brincat and Luke Busutill Lever.
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