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Xewkija consolidate top spot

Daniel Farrugia, of Victoria Hotspurs, reaches the ball ahead of Xewkija’s Manwel Xerri and Frank Lee Galea. Photo: Joseph Mercieca

Daniel Farrugia, of Victoria Hotspurs, reaches the ball ahead of Xewkija’s Manwel Xerri and Frank Lee Galea. Photo: Joseph Mercieca

Xewkija Tigers beat relegation strugglers Victoria Hotspurs 2-0 in the opening match of the third round of the championship to move six points clear of nearest rivals Nadur Youngsters, although the latter have a game in hand.

In the opening half, the Hotspurs shared the exchanges with Xewkija and produced more attacks. However, the Tigers started the second half more aggressively and opened the scoring on 54 minutes through a Mark Camilleri header following a fine move on the left by Chris Camilleri.

The Hotspurs suffered a setback a minute later when they were reduced to 10 men after Oliver Farrugia was sent off for an off-the-ball incident.

Xewkija took advantage to double their lead on 69 minutes with a tap-in by Mark Camilleri who finished off a good action initiated by Rodney Buttigieg.

The leaders stayed on the attack but attempts by Chris Camilleri and Joseph Cefai were stopped by the Hotspurs crossbar.

In another top-flight match last weekend, Sannat Lions gained three precious points following a 3-2 win over SK Victoria Wanderers to move away from the red zone.

Sannat took the lead after 13 minutes from a Diego Maradona Petriaggi free-kick but the Citizens hit back on 26 minutes and levelled the score through Ajibade Adesina.

Sannat pushed more men forward after the break and deservedly regained the lead on 66 minutes, again through Petriaggi.

But, the Wanderers were not finished yet as they made it 2-2 when Chris Sciortino scored from a free-kick.

However, Sannat were rewarded for their efforts as they clinched victory thanks to skipper Mark Muscat who scored the decisive goal in the dying stages.

Division Two

Oratory Youths and St Lawrence Spurs, both vying for the runners-up spot, chalked up easy victories.

Oratory thrashed Żebbuġ 5-0 with a hat-trick from Dione Lautier (34, 74, 88) and a goal each by Josef Galea (48) and substitute Andrea Debrincat (83).

The Spurs beat Qala Saints 3-1. They built a two-goal advantage through Nicholas Micallef (21) and Mario Cutajar (51).

Qala pulled one back through Mario Mifsud (58) but Franklin Grima sealed victory with a third goal seven minutes from time.

In another Division Two match, Munxar Falcons consolidated their mid-table position with a 3-1 win over Għarb Rangers. The match was practically decided during the opening half-hour following goals by William Cassar, Kurt Xerri and Oliver Curmi.

Christian Attard scored Għarb’s goal midway into the first half.

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