|PPCFC vs BBU, back row, LtoR: Kochi (GK), Sokthorn, Thierry, Obadin, Boris, Togbe. Front Row: Sokheng, Pisa, Matnorotin, Suhana, Booysen - click to enlarge|
Crown offered up some excellent free-flowing football in the first-half of today's practice match at RSN Stadium and deservedly led 3-0 at the break. Coach Sam Schweingruber gave a start to three players on trial, with Shane Booysen and Marcel Togbe only arriving the day before, both having been with clubs in Thailand in recent months. Japanese goalkeeper Jun Kochi has been with the squad for a few days, also making the short hop-over the border. It was a lively start and South African Booysen wasted no time in showing his worth on the left flank. On seven minutes, he controlled the ball, swerved past two players and let fly with a shot that hit the net before the BBU keeper could move. One-nil and perhaps the best start a trialist could ask for. Sary Matnorotin's center missed Togbe's boot by inches and Va Sokthorn sent in a curling free-kick that was cleared off the goal-line before Crown struck their second on 15 minutes. Kochi's drop-kick was well-aimed and Togbe, an Ivorian striker, took on his marker and his cross to the far post was perfection as Matnorotin volleyed the ball home. Booysen's quick feet and speed off the mark was devastating and his pass to Sos Suhana, who moved the ball onto Sokthorn, saw the French-Khmer import sky his shot from fifteen yards out. More Booysen magic saw Sokthorn set up Matnorotin but his volley missed the target by inches. Crown were rampant at this stage with Bin Thierry firing wide from the edge of the area and Booysen missing the target from close range after Odion Obadin's header was fumbled by the keeper. With less than thirty minutes gone, Matnorotin was sent clear by Suhana but he screwed his chip shot horribly wide before Crown made four changes. Just before the break, a scuffle broke out with Rim Bunhieng squaring up to Kok Boris and then Crown had Ouk Sothy to thank for heading an effort off the line from a corner. On the stroke of half-time, Booysen registered his second, sprinting clear onto Jeongho Kim's long ball down the middle, and lobbing the ball into the net from 25 yards.
The second period started slowly before BBU were back in the game after a howler of a refereeing decision on 58 minutes. Thierry's free-kick was blocked by the goalscorer who was standing just five yards from the dead-ball, he played a one-two with a colleague and netted, with no-one quite believing the referee allowed the goal to stand. Thierry went close to cancelling out the mishap but his 20-yard effort was touched wide at the foot of the upright. More substitutions didn't help the flow of the game but Booysen struck a volley well over from Ngoy Srin's center and Togbe sent a free-kick inches over the bar after he was fouled. Booysen and Togbe combined neatly with the South African sending his skidding drive just wide before two very good saves denied Crown more goals. Firstly, Thourng Da broke into the box from Um Tola's pass only to see his shot saved and then Matnorotin set up Booysen, but his vicious shot was fisted clear and the game came to an end, with Crown victorious.
PPCFC vs BBU: Kochi (Ary 46), C Pisa (Sothy 32 (Suhana 78), Sokheng (Da 46), Boris (Matnorotin 66), Obadin (Srin 32 (C Pisa 80), Thierry (Booysen 66), Suhana (Kim 32), Sokthorn (Obadin 66), Matnorotin (Makara 32 (S Pisa 66), Booysen (Sumaila 46), Togbe (Tola 83). Subs not used: Ursaphea, Chaly, Lavy, Polo. Booked: Obadin, Makara. MOTM: Booysen. Goals: Booysen 2 (7, 45), Matnorotin (15).