Azerbaijan   5
Malta 9

(0-2, 2-2, 1-0, 2-5)

Malta U-19 reserved their best for the last session yesterday as they beat Azerbaijan 9-5 in a classification match (13-16 places) from the U-19 European Championship, currently being played in the Netherlands.

Anthony Farrugia’s team opened a 3-0 lead early on only for the Azeris to score twice before half-time and then get the only goal in the third session to cut the leeway to 4-3 before the last quarter got underway.

But, the Maltese side produced a strong finale, with Jacob Sciberras, Ben Plumpton and Nicholas Bugelli scoring in quick succession to dash Azerbaijan’s hopes.

Scorers: Bugelli 3, Abela 2, Plumpton 2, Sciberras 1, Galea 1.

ASA president Joe Caruana Curran was satisfied with the victory, the first in the tournament, but urged the team to stay grounded.

“The strides we have made and the evident progress show that we are moving in the right direction,” he said.

“But, let us not believe for a minute that, having beaten Azerbaijan, is the point of arrival or where our ambitions stop. The next game will be the next challenge we want to overcome.

“These matches will continue to lay the strongest possible foundations for the further development of waterpolo on our islands.”

Tomorrow, Malta play Turkey in a play-off for 13th place.


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