Canberra United's Sham Khamis set for family feud
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Canberra United's Sham Khamis set for family feud

Shamiran Khamis laughs her family has never been so torn - things were much easier when the family's two soccer stars played on the same team.

The Canberra United goalkeeper will face her older sister Leena Khamis for the first time in the W-League when Canberra meet the Western Sydney Wanderers at Spotless Stadium on Friday night.

Canberra United goalkeeper Shamiran Khamis.

Canberra United goalkeeper Shamiran Khamis.Credit:Jamila Toderas

Being on opposite sides is unchartered territory for the sisters who grew up in Minto, in south-west Sydney, as two of six siblings with a father who played soccer as a young man in Iraq.

The match-up between Canberra's shot-stopper and Western Sydney's 30-year-old striker has drawn parallel's with Bart and Lisa's ice hockey battle on The Simpsons - but unlike Homer, the Khamis family won't be picking sides.

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Instead they will ride the highs and lows, hiding jubilation for the winner to console the loser. Unless of course they draw, but the 23-year-old United keeper is determined to walk away with three points.

"They’re torn between the two, but it’s an experience and it’s a moment they’re going to cherish for a very long time. We’re just excited to get out there and have a go," Khamis said.

"'Leens' and I have grown up together and played alongside each other for many years, so to know I’m going to be coming up against her for the first time, it’s mixed emotions but we’re going to go out there and do our job on the field, we’re opponents. But then once we’re off the field then it’s a different story.

"Surprisingly when we were a lot younger I was never in goals, but growing up I would always make sure her and I would have good friendly banter.

"She would try extra hard to score against me and I would do that bit extra to stop everything she comes up against me with. We’re looking forward to it and can’t wait.

"My goal is to keep a clean sheet and I’m going to stick with that, whether she comes up against me or not. That’s the main goal - three points, clean sheet."

Shamiran and Leena Khamis will lock horns for the first time.

Shamiran and Leena Khamis will lock horns for the first time.Credit:Louise Kennerley

Shami and Leena spent time together at Sydney FC but the youngest of the two went in search of greener pastures and greener uniforms ahead of her eighth W-League campaign this season.

Leena is no stranger to Canberra United head coach Heather Garriock either - the two were foundation players at Sydney FC and both found the back of the net in the league's opening weekend more than a decade ago.

Canberra put together their best 45 minutes in Garriock's tenure to set up a return to the winners circle last week and the United coach is desperate to double the dose against a winless Wanderers outfit.

"Any team away for us poses a threat, and especially the Wanderers. There are so many experienced players, I’ve played with a few of them. They can turn it on at any time," Garriock said.

"For Leena Khamis, being her 100th game, I know she’ll be up for it, she is a goal scorer. In saying that, if we implement our game plan in which we did last weekend, it was super effective and we created so many goal scoring opportunities, then we should be okay.

"I just said to Sham in the change room, hopefully it’s Leena upset after the game and not us."

W-LEAGUE ROUND SIX

Friday: Western Sydney Wanderers v Canberra United at Spotless Stadium, 5.20pm. TV: Live on Fox Sports and SBS.

Caden Helmers is a sports reporter for The Canberra Times

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