A 10-man Melbourne Victory have played out a spiteful 0-0 draw with Wellington Phoenix at AAMI Park.
Kristijan Dobras received a straight red card and was also one of seven Victory players booked - along with three Wellington counterparts - in an ugly, fiery clash.
Wellington controlled much of the first half but Victory's best chance came in the 17th minute when Ola Toivonen chested down a ball from Andrew Nabbout and forced a diving save from Stefan Marinovic.
The visitors should have capitalised on a poor turnover from James Donachie in the 28th minute. The defender sold Migjen Basha into trouble, with Jaushua Sotirio pinching the ball - only for the winger to pick the wrong forward option and allow Victory to scramble away to safety.
In the 45th minute, Victory had a good chance when Anthony Lesiotis found Kruse back-to-goal. The winger found Dobras, whose shot clattered off the post.
As the first half wound down, Sotirio dragged down Kruse just outside the box but Toivonen pulled his free kick wide.
The Phoenix almost took the lead in the 52nd minute.
Luke DeVere's header from a corner kick hit the crossbar and bounced on the line, with Adama Traore clearing it and Matti Steinmann blasting a shot over the bar.
The game looked set to be turned on its head in the 60th minute when Dobras was sent off.
Just outside his defence, Dobras ran under the ball and elected to kick it, but as he landed, his boot caught Cameron Devlin in the chest.
The midfielder was already on a yellow card but was given a straight red card by referee Stephen Lucas.
Victory's frustration was palpable - with Nabbout, Toivonen, Leigh Broxham and Jakob Poulsen all booked in the space of nine minutes.
But Wellington failed to make the most of their numerical advantage and the home side held on for a scoreless draw.