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Sharks bite back

By Tom Wald 23/02/2003 05:19:00 AM Comments (0)

The Olympic Sharks put behind a week of turmoil off the pitch to continue its recent domination of Perth Glory with a 1-0 national soccer league win at Perth Oval.

It was last year's champions third straight win over the Glory and kept the race for the minor premiership alive following the Sharks' shock axing of coach Gary Phillips midweek.

However the Sydneysiders were a stern, committed outfit under new mentor Lee Sterrey with the victory moving them a point ahead of Perth, although the Glory have a match in hand.

The top of the table clash was always going to have plenty of feeling in it following Olympic's 1-0 grand final win at Subiaco Oval last year, with several heated moments.

But it was the Sharks' well-drilled defence led by outstanding goalkeeper Clint Bolton which kept cool heads and defied the Glory attack which had netted nine goals in its last two outings.

The Glory's last NSL loss was three months ago against the Sharks in the harbour city and it was an own-goal from the home side's Jamie Harnwell in the 62nd minute which proved the difference.

Olympic's Joel Porter had initially claimed the strike as he and Harnwell scrambled for the ball, but it was the Glory player who was adjudged to have steered it inside the right post.

The Sharks started well with striker Ante Milicic finding Porter in space in the 4th minute but his shot was well blocked from close range by Glory custodian Jason Petkovic.

However the home team soon started creating opportunities with strike duo Damian Mori and Bobby Despotovski both unable to finish good open looks on goal.

Perth defender Scott Miller nearly broke the deadlock with a cracking shot from well outside the penalty area moments later but Bolton just tipped it around the post.

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