Sydney FC have claimed derby bragging rights after Leena Khamis’ first-half brace cancelled out a late consolation from Liz Grey.
The result gives the Sky Blues their first win of the new campaign, and extends their dominant record over their Western Sydney rivals.
Jada Whyman was preferred in goal over Teagan Micah, and the sixteen-year-old was eager to stamp her authority on the match early, bolting out of the box to clear a dangerous ball.
The young keeper arrived a fraction too late, however, clattering into Jasmyne Spencer to earn an early caution.
Renee Rollason’s free-kick clanged against the crossbar, but Leena Khamis was in the right pace at the right time to turn home the rebound, giving Sydney an early lead and their first goal of the season.
With a defensive mishap forcing the Wanderers to play catch-up for consecutive weeks, they replied in promising fashion in an entertaining open period.
Hannah Beard’s speculative effort flew harmlessly wide of Shamiran Khamis’ near post, before Eliza Ammendolia superbly rifled a loose ball against the woodwork.
Goalscorer Khamis hit the woodwork herself after meeting Polias’ corner, before Whyman atoned for her early error by making a fine double to keep the Sky Blues at bay.
Jasmyne Spencer was causing no shortage of problems for the hosts, floating off the face of the Wanderers’ central defence and darting into pockets of space around the edge of the box.
The American played a pivotal role in the lead up to Sydney’s second goal, holding off and skipping past two Wanderers defenders near the byline to claim a well-fought corner.
Whyman let resulting delivery slip through her grasp, triggering chaos in the box, with Khamis on hand to divert the ball goalwards via a desperate attempt from the Wanderers goalkeeper.
It was another unfortunate error of judgement from the young keeper, whose error ensured Daniel Barrett’s side a comfortable and deserved 2-0 lead at half time.
Sydney continued their dominance shortly after the break, with Whyman palming away Spencer’s effort at the near post.
Lina O’Neill hooked a shot wide after a lung-busting run from halfway, whilst clever interplay on the edge of the Wanderers box from Ibini and Khamis called Whyman into action again.
With the Wanderers pushing more numbers forward to avoid a second home loss in as many weeks, they were left exposed on the break, with Whyman smothering Ibini’s effort.
The Sky Blues should have all but sealed the three points when Ibini was teed up by the fantastic Spencer, but she cushioned her effort straight into the hands of Whyman.
Norm Boardman’s side eventually pegged one back after a superb run and pick out from Erica Halloway found Liz Grey unmarked at the back post to give the Red and Black a lifeline with five minutes remaining.
But they were unable to launch a final telling assault on the Sydney goal, the Sky Blues hanging on for a vital derby win.
Western Sydney Wanderers 1 (Grey 82')
Sydney FC 2 (Khamis 2', 37')