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maltatoday, SUNDAY, 8 MAY 2016 51 Sport SPORTTODAY FOOTBALL Goran Mujanovic (L) watches as his teammate Mawicio Mathias (C) advances with the ball past Sliema's Jean Paul Farrugia (R) PHOTOGRAPHY BY RAY ATTARD Sliema shock Stripes to reach final Sliema Wanderers ........ 1 Birkirkara .................... 0 SLIEMA Wanderers shocked fa- vourites Birkirkara by beating them 1-0 in the FA Trophy semi- final yesterday afternoon, despite playing for the last 20 minutes with 10 men. The Blues suffered a late blow when Scottish defender Gary Muir was sent off after receiving a second yellow card on the 71st minute, with Birkirkara desper- ately seeking an equaliser after going one goal down just before half-time. The final against the winners in today's other semi-final between Balzan and Pembroke Athleta will be Sliema's 41st appearance in the knock-out competition's final, which the Blues have won a record 20 times. The two sides started off the game with caution, with very few goal scoring opportunities cre- ated in the first 45 minutes. The two sides' best chances came from long distance shots, with Sliema's Muir and Birkirkara's Ryan Ca- menzuli seeing their attempts go wide. But on the stroke of halftime, Sliema's Brazilian forward Denni put the Blues ahead, putting the ball in the net from close range after some neat work from Jean Paul Farrugia and Mark Scerri on the left flank. Following the break, Birkirkara coach Drazen Besek sent on Ryan Darmanin for Kurt Zammit as the Stripes chased an equaliser. Birkirkara however found it hard to break down a resolute Sliema defence. The first real danger for the Blues' keeper Entonjo Elezaj came on the 57th minute when he was forced into deflecting Goran Mujanovic's effort in the path of Cain Attard whose attempt was saved on the line by Peter Xuereb. Sliema were dealt a setback when Muir was sent off after getting his second booking for a late tackle on Temile with 19 minutes to go but despite their numerical advantage, the Stripes failed to capitalise as the Blues defended well to hold on to their lead and book their place in the final. SLIEMA WANDERERS Entonjo Elezaj, Alex Muscat, Mark Scerri, Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Marko Potezica, Peter Xuereb, Johann Bezzina, Denni Rocha dos San- tos (67' Njongo Priso), Gary Muir, Jean Paul Farrugia (87' Armando Vieira dos Santos). Subs not used: Glenn Zammit, Aidan Jake Friggieri, Michele San- sone, Omar Elouni, Luke Dimech. Coach: Alfonso Greco BIRKIRKARA Mirooslav Kopric, Cain Attard, Christian Bubalovic, Mauricio Mazzetti, Goran Mu- janovic, Gareth Sciberras, Mislav Andelkovic, Kurt Zammit (46' Ryan Darmanin), Frank Temile, Ryan Camenzuli (83' Edward Her- rera), Vito Plut. Subs not used: Ini Etim Akpan, Ed- mond Agius, Matthew Guillaum- ier, Zachary Cassar, Fabien Lufi. Coach: Drazen Besek Referee: Glen Tonna Assistant Referees: Jurgen Spiteri, Sammy Attard Additional Assistant Referees: Mario Apap, Matthew De Gabri- ele Fourth Official: William Debat- tista Yellow Cards: Muir Red Cards: 71' Gary Muir Attendance: 1,220

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