Kerċem Ajax 1
Rabat Ajax 5

Rabat Ajax are through to the quarter-finals after taming a spirited Kerċem Ajax team who gave their all despite playing for most of the second half with a man less.

This was a historical occasion for Kerċem as they were playing their first official match at their newly-refurbished stadium even though kick-off was delayed by several minutes after a problem in the lighting system.

In the opening half, Kerċem had a Mario Mifsud effort hitting the upright before Diego Carrillo Pendas opened the score for the visitors from a free-kick just before the interval.

Kerċem suffered a blow on 53 minutes when they had Manuel Tabone sent off for a second bookable offence.

However, they fought bravely and their efforts were rewarded on 56 minutes when they drew level through John Camilleri.

The Rabat keeper did well to keep out a Joseph Chetcuti lob and Kerċem shouted penalty when the ball seemed to have struck Patrick Borg’s hand inside the box.

The Magpies then stepped up a gear and shot into a 3-1 lead following quick goals by Borg and Malcolm Licari.

Kercem had no fight left in them and Rabat made sure of a place in the last eight with two other goals late on through debutant Sorin Virgil Oproiescu and Ryan Micallef.

Kerċem: L. Camilleri, P. Kyumyurdzhiev, K. Bonello, M. Mifsud, A. Buttigieg, I. Xuereb (S. Rais), M. Tabone, A. Mizzi, J. Camilleri, J. Chetcuti (O. Spiteri), K. Mifsud.

Rabat: P. Velimirovic, S. Gauci, D. Azzopardi, I. Carapic, P. Borg, J. Caruana, M. Licari (C. Vella), S. Virgil Oproiescu, D. Pelaez Bellido (J. Bajada), R. Micallef, D. Carrillo Pendas (A. Azzopardi).

Referee: Sandro Spiteri.

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