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Exciting Matches In The First Round Of The Budweiser Pub Challenge 19/06/2003

Budweiser 5 a-side tournament

The group stage teams participating in the Budweiser 5-a side Pub Challenge was held over the weekend at Luxol football grounds.

Veterans Ray Vella and Guzi Xuereb, for Zmerc Pub, displayed all their class to beat Ryan's Irish Pub in the first match of the tournament. However their experience was not enough to keep them from losing to the younger energetic Peppermint Park team who went on to win Group A.

In Group B, King's Own Band Club had little difficulty to win both matches and hence the group. The defenders of Places and Qube Vodka Bar had a tough time marking in- form striker Noel Tabone of King's Own Band Club.

In the most balanced group, Conquest Pub won Group C with a close win on Black Bull Pub. In the last match, goalkeeper George Vella from Dive Bar was voted man of match after showing impressive reflexes to deny Black Bull from winning the match.

Tournament favorites Rookies Sports Bar, hammered Huggins and Smart to win Group D. They scored impressive 26 goals in 2 matches. Huggins beat Smart to make it through to the second round.

In Group E, Hacienda Bar showed brilliant team play and tactics to win the group. Tac-Caccu Social Club veterans played well against Tower but were out of steam against Hacienda Bar.

Star player Wayne Borg St. John, of Halfway Inn Bar, displayed fine skills. His flair was too much for opposing defenders to control. In the Gozitan derby, Café Jubilee had the better of Arkadia Foodstore to qualify from Group F in second place.

Talented Mosta FC players failed to play as a team and are out of the tournament after losing both matches against The Bar and O'Casey's. Claude Grech for O'Casey's, was an inspiration for his team mates as they won a hard fought match against The Bar in order to avoid favorites Rookies in the second round.

Birkirkara FC played very organised football. The team is built on a solid defense, which was beaten only once. This proved to be the right tactic to win Group H. Il-Bahri won against Henry J Beans to make it through to the second round.

The second round of the Budweiser 5 a-side soccer tournament will take place tomorrow, while the quarter finals will be on Sunday 22nd June. All matches are being held at the Luxol Grounds.