Melbourne City goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen produced a stunning performance to help inspire his team to a 2-1 derby triumph over Melbourne Victory.
City thrilled home fans at a raucous AAMI Park as they raced into a 2-0 lead after half an hour.
Stefan Mauk converted Ben Garuccio’s cross with a brave diving header in the 21st minute and Paulo Retre doubled the advantage after Bruno Fornaroli’s attempt was blocked.
Besart Berisha guided home a free header to reduce the arrears on the stroke of half-time and City were then indebted to a display of brilliance from the veteran Sorensen.
The 39-year-old former Sunderland and Stoke City keeper made a succession of fine save – a reaction stop to keep out Kosta Barbarouses’ header early in the second half arguably the pick of the bunch.
City are now three points behind Western Sydney Wanderers in second after the leaders were held to a 2-2 draw at Perth Glory.
The Wanderers twice came from behind successfully, with Brendon Santalab cancelling out Diego Castro’s second-minute penalty and Mitch Nichols slotting home nine minutes from time at the end of a wonderful run from substitute Federico Piovaccari.
That restored parity following a stunning 30-yard free-kick from Mitch Oxborrow but the visitors were unable to extend their seven-match winning streak.
In Saturday’s other match, Roy Krishna’s last-gasp penalty grabbed a 1-1 draw for Wellington Phoenix against Sydney FC at Westpac Stadium.
The late drama began when Filip Holosko’s solo effort put Sydney ahead with six minutes to play.