Greece missed its chance, and the penalty kick that went with it, in the opening match of the European Championship, instead hanging on for a 1-1 draw Friday with co-host Poland in a match that saw both teams reduced to 10 men.
Shortly after substitute Dimitris Salpigidis had equalized for Greece by knocking in a loose ball in the 51st minute, the diminutive striker was taken down by Poland goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny in the area.
Szczesny was given a red card, and captain Giorgos Karagounis was given the chance to again give Greece an opening match win against the host. Eight years ago, Karagounis scored in the opening 2-1 win over Euro 2004 host Portugal.
His shot, however, was saved by replacement goalkeeper Przemyslaw Tyton, whose first touch of the ball salvaged a point for the co-hosts in Group A.
Salpigidis came on at halftime, a gamble for Greece coach Fernando Santos to leave three attackers on the field after the loss of both central defenders in the first half _ Sokratis Papastathopoulos to a red card after a pair of yellows, and Avraam Papadopoulos to injury.
But Salpigidis didn't disappoint.
Greece midfielder Vassilis Torosidis, who dropped back into central defense after the ejection of Papastathopoulos, crossed the ball into the center for Fanis Gekas.
Gekas and Poland defender Marcin Wasilewski collided and Szczesny jumped for the ball, but failed to clear it. That left the loose ball sitting patiently as Salpigidis ran in to knock it into the net.