Local Sport > Hockey > MALTA MAKE IT TO THE SEMI-FINALS

MALTA MAKE IT TO THE SEMI-FINALS

Malta made it to the semi-finals of the Eurohockey Nations Championship IV being played in Vilnius, Lithuania after beating Cyprus 3-1.

This was a crucial match as both teams were with a very good chance of making it to the semifinals. Malta took the initiative and as early as the 6th minute Luke Borg Costanzi tested the Cypriot defense hitting a shot just past the right hand post.

Two minutes later Justin Bonello saw his shot deflected past the post off a defender's stick. Malta then won three penalty corners between the 12th and 15th minutes but were denied by the Cypriot custodian who was sound throughout.

After Ramon Chircop parried a shot from a Cypriot penalty corner award in the 18th minute Malta applied pressure on the Cypriot rear guard but were denied a path to goal as Cyprus put eight men behind the ball inside their 25yard area.

Cyprus went ahead against the run of pay when they scored with an exquisite cross shot from the top of the D.

Malta then reacted strongly and took advantage of their fifth penalty corner award in the dying seconds of the first half whenLuke Borg Costanzi equalized with the hooter sounding immediately after.

The second half was a different story altogether and Malta dominated from then onwards.

They had two penalty corners beaten away by the Cypriot goalkeeper but in the 50th minute they went ahead after an orchestrated move down the right flank when Keith Calleja scored the second goal.

In the 59th minute Malta were awarded a penalty stroke and Jonathan Borg calmly slotted home to send Malta 3-1up.

They then played out time and could have increased their tally towards the end, the final whistle blowing leaving them worthy winners looking forward to a semi final against Denmark on Friday afternoon.
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Monday, January 22, 2018
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