A buoyant Sela Meas, oozing confidence after their easy opening round win will be up against Cellcard Eagles in the first of three games scheduled at the Beeline Arena on Saturday as the 12-team Cambodian Basketball League presented by Western Union rolls into its third week.
Clearly outpaced in the early stages, the all-Cambodian Sela Meas charged home in the second half to register a comfortable victory over NSK Dream.
The Eagles had some genuine excuses for their loss to the IRB the Lord in a low-scoring affair, having been forced to pull out key players Sean Looney and Nic Morgan, both of whom had been booked for their fourth individual fouls.
That void opened up the fourth quarter nicely for The Lord to work out their victory from a point where the Eagles were within striking range.
The Eagles will be determined to avoid such slip-ups and if they put their twin towers to good use, Sela Meas may find the going tough.
Sok Samnang could well be Sela Meas’ trump card with Pheng Dara’s perimeter shooting success a vital supporting element.
Ganzberg, meanwhile, were brave in their defeat against Alaxan Patriots. It was only in the last two minutes of a well-contested game that Ganzberg’s resolve sagged a bit and allowed their rivals to take command.
The Filipinos-dominated team will again be called upon to do their best when they take on CCPL Heat, who showed their attacking flair in that well earned victory over Phnom Penh Dragons. This could well be the stand-out game of the day.
Meanwhile, the Dragons will be on court late in the evening, facing off against IRB the Lord. Both teams carry some positives and concerns from their previous outings.
For the Lord, the long range accuracy of national team player Monh Ratana is a key factor. It did not work well enough in their game against the Eagles, but their fast transitions more than made up for this shortfall. These drive-ins, often done with precision, are what the Dragons should be worried about.
The Dragons’ loss to Heat had a bizzare element about it. The two referees called out no less than 64 fouls combined, literally reducing the game to a battle from behind the free throw line.
The Dragons could hardly settle down to a rhythm of their liking and adding to their misery was a fourth foul called on centre Eric Laughlin.
If they manage a much clearer passage this time, the Dragons could trouble the Lord, who on the strength of their first round showing, however, may prove hard to toss.