Saturday, March 24, 2012

Shock and awe

National Police go top, for a while, with 2 wins out of 2
Well, okay so the headline is a bit over the top, but a National Police Commissary victory over Boeung Ket was a bit of a shock, certainly to the Rubbermen who fully expected to win, whilst you must give Preah Khan their dues for demolishing the Sea Sharks of Chhlam Samuth. With the kick-off delayed by thirty minutes, it was the Police who got into their stride the quicker in the 1st game of the day. Nov Soseila was revelling in his return to Metfone C-League action, after his former club the Army kept him from playing for Naga last term, and was bounding up and down the right wing, throwing himself to the ground to try and get free-kicks whenever possible. When he did stay on his feet, his pass inside to Sim Vuth gave his colleague the opportunity to curl one into the top corner from the edge of the box, for the opening goal on 15 minutes. Ten minutes later, Boeung Ket took a quick free-kick after a backpass was picked up by the Police keeper and Friday Nwakuna tapped home, only for referee Thong Chankethya, never far from controversy, to rule it out. Nwakuna was upset and made everyone aware of it. Eight minutes from the break and the Police were in seventh heaven as new signing Nelson Oladiji tapped home from four yards after the Rubbermen failed to clear a Soseila corner that was headed goalwards by Vutha. Boeung Ket's Sin Dalin, making his C-League debut for his new team after getting the thumbs up to play from the FFC, curled a free-kick against the cross-bar, as referee Chankethya saw out the first-half with two more bookings to take his caution count to four.

Just 18 seconds into the 2nd half and Oladiji should've put his team out of sight but his close range shot was blocked by the Rubbermen keeper's feet. Nwakuna swept a 20-yarder against the woodwork, whilst Chankethya was a little too quick to flash a 2nd yellow, and a red, to Police's Sim Vutha for an innocuous tap on 67 minutes. It really looked like the referee was trying to give Boeung Ket a fighting chance. They didn't disappoint him and with eleven minutes left on the clock, Keo Sokngorn was on hand to tap home after Sumaila Momoh's fizzing shot was too hot to handle. Despite a glut of corners to defend, the Police held firm and despite the referee adding on an extra five minues. In the third minute of that, Boeung Ket's Lar Pichseyla completely lost his marbles. He elbowed Joel Omoraka in the face and then launched himself, two-footed, at Srey Udom and deservedly saw a staright red card. It was a disgusting challenge and one which should get censure from the FFC. Udom isn't my favourite player by any means but he was lucky not to break a leg. The 2-1 win for the Police temporarily put them at the top of the table with six points from their two matches. For Boeung Ket it was a reminder that C-League life may be a bit harder than they first thought.

In the 2nd match of the day, Chhlam Samuth were hoping to catch Preah Khan Reach on an off day but had no such good fortune, losing 6-0. They must've been happy to see Khuon Laboravy limp off after twenty minutes but it was just the lull before the storm. Five minutes later Chea Samnang swept PKR into the lead and soon after missed an identical chance to extend it. Five minutes before the interval and Prak Mony Udom, revelling in his free role, turned on a sixpence and rifled in PKR's second, before Ros Samoeurn was denied by a goal-line clearance with the Navy team's only 1st half chance. PKR turned up the pressure on the restart and passed their way through the Sea Sharks midfield. They had a helping hand when Chhim Bunsan was unlucky to see a 2nd yellow on 57 minutes and walk for his early bath. Two minutes later a Pov Samnang late tackle on Phany Y Rotha gave Udom a spot-kick from which he made no mistake. On 66 minutes sub Chan Vathanaka broke down the left and buried a vicious shot for number four and two more goals in the last ten minutes from Sok Chanraksmey and a second for Chea Samnang sealed PKR's 2nd success in as many games and put them on top through goal difference.
Boeung Ket caught a cold against Police and Pichseyla deserves to have the book thrown at him
Chhlam Samuth got a mauling by Preah Khan, losing 6-0

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