Enraged by a controversial offside ruling that went against them, leading to Naga Corp’s equaliser, Build Bright United nearly staged a walkout before cooling down to hammer out a 2-1 victory in a tense Metfone C-League encounter at the Olympic Stadium yesterday.
The university-backed side were off to a dream start, with Oum Chandara producing a tidy finish to put the side ahead as early as the fifth minute.
After securing the lead til the break with some stout-hearted performances from the backline, BBU were up against a concerted move trigg-ered, ironically, by their own former striker Nuth Sinoun, who recently joined Naga.
Linesman Chy Sopheap raised the flag to indicate that Nuth Sinoun was offside, but referee Saing Sopheak paid no heed and waved the game on, resulting in Naga’s Chin Chum working his way round the defenders before firing past goalkeeper Hem Simay.
The entire BBU team then protested to the match officials, who insisted Nuth Sinoun had been passive in the move. Although the referee stuck to his guns, BBU were reluctant to resume the game and the row rumb-led on for nearly 15 minutes before wiser counsel prevailed.
As recompense to this unsavoury incident, BBU then went on to clinch the tie as the man wearing the captain’s armband, Prum Puthsethy, deservingly found the match-winner in the 81st minute.
The BBU defence did a grand job of reining in Naga’s main striker, Julius Oiboh, who twice found stopper Simay in the way after driving deep into the box. An open-goal opportunity saw Neang Chenla’s header carom off the cross bar as a determined BBU backline hardly put a foot wrong.
During a dominant first-half show by the University side, Chhun Sothearath had his thundering drive also hit the cross bar and his header of quality went straight to Naga keeper Phorn Ratana.
While two consecutive victories in the second leg have bumped BBU up to fourth in the league, Naga’s loss has made the title chase appear a lot harder. The former champions are still in second place, but move to four points off the pace of leaders Phnom Penh Crown.
Preah Khan Reach punish Police
In yesterday’s late kick-off, which had been delayed somewhat by the earlier match’s remonstrations, Preah Khan Reach capitalised on some fine finishing for a 3-0 rout of National Police Commissary.
The Police suffered from the early departure of midfielder and national team star Tit Dara, who limped off with an ankle injury after just 10 minutes. A further nine minutes on, PKR took the lead through Tum Saray.
The Police fought back admirably to create numerous chances up front, including some memorable moments by Sophal Udom, but to no avail as the Hun Sen Cup holders went into the break up by one.
On the hour mark, the Police were awarded an indirect free kick inside the box due to a handling error off a back pass by PKR keeper Sar Sophea.
Man Ritavann stepped up to hammer his shot into the wall, and the rebound fell to Samuth Dalin, who blasted his effort over the bar when it seemed easier to score.
Moments later, PKR were able to punish Police’s inaccuracies as Phany I Rotha latched on to a centre from the right by Prak Mony Udom.
The winger then delivered another masterful cross to the head of Khoun Laboravy to put the result beyond doubt on 72 minutes.
With all three points, Preah Khan Reach consolidated their third place on the table, while National Police Commissary were left wallowing in seventh position on 14 points. ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY UNG CHAMROEUN