Sydney FC, Melbourne Victory fight out tough W-League draw, Perth Glory stay top

A late equaliser from substitute Gema Simon saw champions Melbourne Victory secure a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Sydney FC on Monday, ending the Sky Blues’ perfect start to the season.

Sydney seemed set to collect a measure of revenge for defeat in last year’s semi-final thanks to Jasmyne Spencer’s goal on the hour mark until Simon’s late intervention.

The match was well-balanced although Victory goalkeeper Brianna Davey was kept busy at times, notably finger-tipping a Servet Uzunlar header wide and blocking Spencer on several occasions.

However, Spencer would not be denied and the diminutive American coolly converted Amy Harrison’s pinpoint cross to put her side in the ascendency.

The Sky Blues looked set to retain their share of top spot on the ladder until Simon swept home from close range with three minutes remaining, following a fine run and cross from Christine Nairn.

The Victory could even have won it in injury time but Sky Blues midfielder Teresa Polias was on hand to clear a goalbound shot off the line.

The result leaves Perth Glory in sole control of top spot following their remarkable 10-1 win over Western Sydney Wanderers on Sunday.

Australia captain Kate Gill was the major beneficiary with a competition record five-goal haul, including an 11-minute hat-trick. There were also doubles for fellow Matildas representatives Sam Kerr and Caitlin Foord in a bizarre match that remained scoreless until the final moments of the first half.

The scoreline fell narrowly shy of the 11-0 W-League record set by Sydney FC against the Glory three seasons ago.

Canberra United returned to the winner’s circle outlasting Brisbane Roar with a 2-0 win and inflicting more pain on the two-time champions.

A goal in each half from Grace Field and Michelle Heyman lifted United to victory, while the star-studded Roar stumbled to their third loss in four outings.

Last season’s wooden-spooners Newcastle Jets again showed their quality with a sparkling 4-0 victory against the winless Adelaide United.

The Jets were rarely troubled after opening the scoring through Tori Huster in the first half, with the margin extended after the break through a Rhali Dobson double and a goal from Emily van Egmond.