The Phoenix chances of making the A-League football finals are over after they drew 1-1 with Sydney in Wellington and Perth beat Brisbane 3-1 in Perth.
The Phoenix played first and kept their slim hopes alive with the draw, though those dreams were dashed later last night as the Perth Glory locked away a finals berth at nib Stadium.
The Brisbane Roar were already guaranteed a third or fourth place finish and while Glory will need a miracle to break into the top four, they are secure in the finals.
Perth finish their season at home next Sunday to Melbourne City needing to win by seven goals to move into the top four, while Brisbane back up from their Champions League clash by hosting Wellington on Sunday.
In Wellington, the decision to allow the introduction of Video Assistant Referees just two rounds before the finals series was always going to raise eyebrows.
And while the decision to award a 70th minute penalty to the recently-crowned Premiers Sydney FC may overshadow discussions about the match, Michael McGlinchey's added-time equaliser handed the Phoenix the most slender of lifelines for their finals hopes, that was until Perth won.
It was an uncharacteristically subdued start as both sides took a few minutes to find their feet.
In the 27th minute Roy Krishna drew the first real save of the game, with Nix' former goalkeeper Danny Vukovic getting a strong left hand to the Fijian's stinging shot.
Krishna then came in for some close attention almost immediately afterwards as the Nix leading goalscorer was kicked heavily on the ankle by Aaron Calver who went into the book for his late attempted clearance.
Nil-nil at half-time, with the Phoenix enjoying four shots to one on target.
In the 70th minute a moment of controversy. Following a crossed ball several Sydney FC players surrounded referee Shaun Evans and after a few moments delay the referee called for the assistance of the Video Assistant Referees.
After several viewings it was adjudged that the ball struck a Phoenix player's hand and a penalty was awarded - Bobo made no mistake thumping past Italiano to open the scoring.
As Phoenix pushed further forward their reward came deep into added time. A lofted ball was nodded back across goal by Doyle to McGlinchey who nestled a fine header past Vukovic to send the loyal Wellington fans into rapture.
There was still time for another potential VAR moment - in a helter-skelter last minute Wellington players felt they had a shout for first handball and then a penalty.
The fourth official advised the coaching benches that the incident was going to be reviewed, but referee Shaun Evans proceeded to then blow full-time.