By Vakhtang Bzikadze
Greece's hopes of claiming one of the top two places in UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying Group 2 suffered a setback as Stilianos Aposporis' side were held to a 1-1 draw in Georgia.
The visitors struck first at the Boris Paichadze stadium in Tbilisi, Gocha Khojava bringing down Georgios Samaras in the penalty area and Greek captain Fanourios Goundoulakis duly converted the resulting spot-kick.
Khojava, who was used on the right of midfield instead of in his normal playmaker's role, made amends after 30 minutes. After winning a free-kick on the right he opted to shoot from a long range and was rewarded as the ball took a deflection off Greek goalkeeper Michail Sifakis and went in.
Both sides suffered injuries in the second half, Georgia's striker Sandro Iashvili forced to end the match despite injury as all the substitutes had been used by that stage, while Greece finished with ten men after Filippos Darlas broke his nose in a collision with Davit Chigladze and was unable to continue.
All to do
The result left Greece in third place in the seven-team section with their six games having yielded eight points, eight fewer than leaders Denmark and five behind second-placed Turkey, who both won today. Greece next face Albania on Tuesday, with Georgia, in sixth place, welcoming Turkey the same day.