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Lucky 13 for Polish hosts

A blizzard of goals and a dramatic comeback marked the start of the 2004/05 UEFA Regions' Cup campaign.

Hosts triumph
On the opening day of action in Poland on Sunday, Group 6 hosts Malopolska Amateur stamped their authority with a 13-1 win against Azerbaijan's FC Femida Beylagan, while Germany's Südwestdeutscher FV came back to win 3-2 against Eastern Serbia Amateur.

Two hat-tricks
Goals from Tomasz Swierkosz and Marcin Kwater gave Malopolska a 2-0 lead within seven minutes of kick-off in Wolbrom. And while Azar Mehdiyev put the Azeris on the scoresheet with a great second-half strike, hat-tricks from Rafal Bryl and Robert Drag kept the goals flowing for Malopolska.

Somersault striker
Bryl was named man of the match, having endeared himself to the crowd with his effusive goal celebrations. "I scored three goals and after each I did a somersault," he told uefa.com. "This is my trademark." However, some credit must go to Femida goalkeeper Ramil Zeynalov who saved two penalties.

Tired players
"I was nervous about this match, but our opponents were weaker than expected," said Malopolska coach Michal Królikowski. His opposite number Siyab Pashayev could only agree. "We were much worse than the Polish team," he admitted. "Our players were tired after the long trip to Poland."

Lack of practice
Femida, whose players come from the city of Beylagan, 250km from the Azeri capital Baku, and include top-flight assistant referee Elshan Durmashev, have been beset by problems and played only one friendly game together before travelling to Poland.

Must do better
"We must do better in the next matches," said Pashayev, whose team will be keen to hone their short-passing game before their next outing against Eastern Serbia. "I think the Poles will win the tournament."

German class
At the moment, Südwestdeutscher look like Malopolska's most serious rivals having recovered a two-goal deficit to win 3-2 against Slavoljub Pavlovic's young Eastern Serbia side.

Great goalkeeping
The German team had the upper hand in the first half, and it was only thanks to some superb goalkeeping from Saša Stamenkovic - who plays in Serbia and Montenegro with fourth division FK Lemind - that Heinz-Jürgen Schlösser's men did not go into the break with a comfortable advantage.

Serbian strength
However, Eastern Serbia were in the lead within a minute of the restart through a Jovan Kuprešanin strike, and were two goals to the good after 68 minutes when Dragan Stanojevic powered home. They seemed on course for victory until substitute Nahir Bisso scored a 79th-minute free-kick for the Germans.

Late winner
That goal revived Südwestdeutscher, and Jochen Hartmann and captain Andreas Appel came up with the goals to turn the game, both headers from corners, and the latter deep into added time. "My boys showed sprit," said Schlösser, whose side face Malopolska in their second game on Tuesday. "It was a good match and the Serbo-Montenegrin team played well."

Added impetus
Pavlovic, meanwhile, was not dispirited by the defeat. "We made a good start to the second half, but at the end of the match my players felt tired," he said. "In the next two games we will try to play better. We have not lost our fighting spirit and hope to make it to the final round."