In the first round of the 2022-23 A-League Women playoffs in mid-April, there were two matches involving the top four teams. On April 15, the Elimination Final was a Melbourne derby between third-place City and fourth-place Victory, with the sides winning seven previous Grand Finals between them (four for City). During the regular season, Victory had tied City 2-2 and beat them 2-0. The latter was part of Victory’s seven-game undefeated run to clinch the last playoff spot — but only their second win in that stretch.
In a stellar Elimination Final, Victory defeated City 4-1 on penalties after a 3-3 tie. Melina Ayers scored a second-half hat trick for the Victory to give her side a 3-1 lead with 18 minutes left. City fought back behind goals from Rhianna Policina (79′) and New Zealand international and former University of Tennessee forward Hannah Wilkinson (97′). City was eliminated from the playoffs while Victory moved on to play Sydney FC in the Preliminary Final, a repeat of the last two Grand Finals.
Access the best women’s soccer coverage all year long
Start your FREE, 7-day trial of The Equalizer Extra for industry-leading reporting and insight on the USWNT, NWSL and beyond.