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Tuesday, July 3, 2012
They don't come much bigger than this coming Saturday's titanic clash between Phnom Penh Crown and their arch rivals Preah Khan Reach in the resumption of Metfone Cambodian League hostilities after a three-week break for the AFC U-22 competition. The two clubs come from opposite ends of the football spectrum, with Crown a successful private enterprise who've rejuvenated Cambodian football in the last few years, while Preah Khan are old school, backed by the Military Police, essentially the establishment of Cambodian football. The tables are turned for this game. Usually, it's Crown who are heading the table and punishing all before them, but this time around, Preah Khan are numero uno and Crown languish in fifth place, one spot outside the play-off places. After a topsy-turvy first half of the campaign, Crown need to get their game head on and stave off the unthinkable, which would be to not qualify for the end of season play-offs. This test against the current league leaders and against newboys Boeung Ket the following Wednesday, will demonstrate if Crown have got their act together in time to make a push for the four qualifying places. This match was originally scheduled as an end of term showdown until the football federation in their wisdom, decided to bring it forward to this coming Saturday (7 July) with a 2.30pm kick-off at Olympic Stadium. Also on Saturday, Western Uni meet the Army. The National Police versus Naga match on Sunday looks to be a tasty tussle while Chhlam Samuth face BBU in the later game. Then on Wednesday 11 July, Phnom Penh Crown are back at Olympic to meet 4th place Boeung Ket in a 2.30pm start. The two teams are already developing a grudge mentality having each won a game in their previous two meetings. Crown won 1-0 in the Hun Sen Cup, whilst the Rubbermen won the league encounter, 2-1.