Thursday, July 10, 2014

The race is on

Dzarma Bata, knocking in the goals for Svay Rieng
The race for the Golden Boot award - the top scorer - in the Cambodian League just got much more intense as Svay Rieng's hotshot striker Dzarma Bata landed a five-goal haul against a sorry Kirivong team yesterday in a 9-0 thrashing to take him one goal ahead of Phnom Penh Crown netbuster George Bisan. Both strikers are Nigerian and Bisan has been knocking the goals in for the last three seasons in Cambodia with three different clubs, while Bata is a relative newcomer, only arriving in February. As Crown have forged ahead in the race to land the Championship title, Bisan has been instrumental in their success with his 19 goals. Svay Rieng, last year's champions, had a poor start to the season and were quickly knocked out of the AFC President's Cup and Singapore Cup but Bata hasn't let that stop him from regularly finding the back of the net and that five-goal blast against Kirivong has put him on 20 goals* for the season with a few hat-tricks thrown in for good measure. The tall 21-year-old was playing with Fico Tay Ninh in the Vietnam League 2 before crossing the border. Born in Kaduna, Nigeria, he went through the well-known Pepsi Academy system and tried out for the Nigerian U-17 and U-20 teams, including a stint in France, before joining Tay Ninh. Crown and Svay Rieng meet a week on Saturday, so the two hotshots will come face to face with each other. In the last meeting between the two sides, Bata netted a hat-trick inside the first-half  and Bisan didn't register on the scoresheet. It promises to be an exciting end to the season as far as the race for the Golden Boot is concerned.
* There is no official confirmation of the goals tally from the Football Federation.

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