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2018/19 Australian A League, Regular Season
  • Ola Toivonen (5')
  • James Troisi (56')
  • Kosta Barbarouses (88')
  • David Williams (7')
  • Roy Krishna (20' PEN, 28')

Melbourne Victory and Wellington Phoenix share spoils in six-goal thriller

A late strike from Kosta Barbarouses salvaged a point for Melbourne Victory in a ding-dong 3-3 draw with Wellington Phoenix on Sunday.

The New Zealander struck a volley with two minutes remaining against his old side as Victory jumped back from a two-goal deficit in style.

Just days after Victory's 5-0 away belting of Brisbane, Phoenix stunned the champions with three first-half goals.

Roy Krishna netted a double for the visitors after teammate David Williams equalised Ola Toivonen's opener in a pulsating stanza, the equal of any 45 minutes of football played this season.

James Troisi replied for Victory in the 55th minute as Kevin Muscat's side chased the match in a thrilling finale.

Terry Antonis struck the post and Thomas Deng made a last-ditch slide tackle to deny Cillian Sheridan at one end, before Barbarouses arrived to save Victory's bacon.

The result is the second draw the two finals-bound sides have played out at AAMI Park this season. Their last clash, a 1-1 draw, was an engrossing encounter. On Sunday, the 18,136 crowd were treated to a stone cold classic.

"And not only for the neutrals, I enjoyed it as well," Muscat said. "The way we played in the second half was very like us. Like we want to be. And considering how we came in at half-time, it was an enormous effort."

Victory's giant Swede put the home side ahead with a neat chip after just five minutes, but then the Phoenix took over.

Mark Rudan's side couldn't be contained at times, breaking with pace and showing trickery that flummoxed Victory's defence.

Thomas Deng was at fault for the opener, losing track of Williams as he finished Louis Fenton's cutback.

Krishna then transformed the contest in 10 minutes by winning a penalty, scoring it, and netting once more.

Josh Hope caught Krishna's trailing leg in the box on 19 minutes, allowing the Fijian to thump home the spot kick past Lawrence Thomas.

By scoring his second -- belting home from an acute angle after Thomas' spilled a long range drive from Williams -- he became the first player in A-League history to score three consecutive doubles.

A Wellington win looked on the cards until Victory lifted their intensity, Troisi cashing in after a one-two with Toivonen.

Then in the helter-skelter final moments, Antonis' hopeful long ball drew the desired result, falling to an unmarked Barbarouses to steer home through a packed penalty box.

The result lengthens Wellington's unbeaten run to nine, but keeps them fifth much to Rudan's disappointment.

"It was quite tough to take being on the other side, particularly after being up 3-1 at half-time," he said. "We're nowhere near where we need to be and that showed in the second half."