A storming second half from the Western Sydney Wanderers that included a brace from central defender Brendan Hamill has seen them cement a spot in the top 6 with a 4-1 win over last place Wellington Phoenix.
After 40 minutes of sheer boredom, Brendon Santalab combined with Mark Bridge to open the score. Eschewing the usual "play out from the back" tactics the right fullback Josh Risdon fired a long diagonal ball over the top of the high Wellington defence for the run of Mark Bridge. After weaving his magic inside the penalty area, he laid the ball across for Brendon Santalab who was starting the game after Riera pulled out with an injury. From a few meters out it would have been harder to miss than score and Santalab made no mistake.
Before the celebrations had died down the visiting side were back level. A free kick from a long way out resulted in a game of pinball, Roy Krishna had a shot saved by Vedran Janjetovic only for it to fall to Sarpeet Singh who hammered it into the roof of the net.
With half an hour to play the Wanderers hit the lead from a set piece. Alvaro Cejudo whipped an inswinging corner to the near post, and Brendan Hamill rose to head the ball into the back of the net, making it 2-1.
The 78th minute saw Brendan Hamill claim a rare brace, as the Wanderers once again scored from a corner. This time Cejudo's cross to the near post was flicked on by Mark Bridge and the Wellington defence left Hamill all alone to finish neatly past Tando Velaphi.
With minutes to play they killed the game off with their fourth goal. After some combination play in the backline betwen Roly Bonevacia and Josh Risdon who burst through the Wellington defence, he beat Tando Velaphi to his touch over the top and cut it sideways with Chris Ikonomidis twinkletoes taking the ball around the covering Wellington defenders and tapping it into the empty net.
The win puts the Wanderers into 5th position on the table, 1 ahead of Adelaide United and 5 in front of Brisbane with both those sides having a game in hand. The Wanderers now have a Melbourne double in Rounds 24 & 25 before finishing up the regular season against the Roar and Adelaide at home.