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Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Knowing that a win would pile the pressure on Salford in the final game, Olympia started strongly and took an early lead and were looking solid at 4-1 up after 10 minutes. However, with Zsolt Deak in Manchester’s goal pulling off a sting of fine saves Olympia’s domination wasn’t reflected in the score line as Manchester pulled it back to 7-5.
Manchester’s aggressive defending style saw them concede three first half penalties but their robustness and tenacity ensured they remained within touching distance of Olympia, heading for the break only 13-10 down. However, a noisy crowd helped cheer Olympia on and they opened up a 21-14 lead.
Despite a lack of replacements, Manchester battled on and with the gap only five goals with ten minutes left, Olympia clung on nervously to their lead and when the whistle blew there were muted celebrations as they waited for the Salford result to confirm their spot in Europe.