Build Bright United have a bizarre habit of springing surprises when you least expect them to. At the Old Stadium yesterday, the University-backed side made light of hefty odds to topple Phnom Penh Crown 1-0 to reach the semi-finals of the prestigious Hun Sen Cup.
By the time the news of BBU’s Cup upset had trickled into the Olympic Stadium, Boeung Ket Rubber Field were putting the finishing touches to their 5-1 drubbing of Svay Rieng to get past the quarter-final stage for the first time after a couple of failed attempts.
Reung Bunheang’s solitary strike, a 44th-minute free kick, won the day for BBU, who now face Boeung Ket in next Wednesday’s last four clash.
Boueng Ket’s dominance was never seriously questioned and Svay Rieng’s counter attacks appeared to come in drips and drabs, which goes some way to explaining the flattering margin.
In victory, Boueng Ket took revenge for their loss to Svay Rieng in last year’s Metfone C-League final, with Svay Rieng’s defensive chinks badly exposed.
Boeung Ket took the lead in the 34th minute when Sok Pheng turned the ball into the net after it had cannoned off the defensive wall following a fierce Chan Vathanaka free kick.
Crossing over with that psychological advantage, Boeung Ket quickly built up a 3-0 cushion through goals from Sok Sovan and Keo Sokgnon early in the second half. The Keo family cheer went up again when Sokgnon’s brother Sopheng, coming in as a substitute, made it 4-0.
Svay Rieng captain Prak Mony Udom, who had dispelled injury concerns to take the pitch, pulled off a poor consolation when his free kick hit a defender and ballooned over the Boeung Ket goalkeeper into the net. He has had a couple of rueful misses as well with set-pieces.
Who else other than Boeung Ket’s pride and Svay Rieng’s envy Khoun Laboravy could have confirmed the rout, his elegant left foot finish constantly reminding the onlookers of his immense value to the Kampong Cham team’s attacking prowess this season.
“I am very happy with our performance and preparation was indeed the key,” Boeung Ket coach Prak Vuthy told the Post.
Over at the Cheng Meng football centre in Phnom Penh’s outskirts, National Police Commissary downed Ministry of National Defence 2-1 to earn a semi-final place.
They will next play Naga Corp, who held on to a 1-0 advantage in a nervy finish to their late kick-off match against Kirivong Sok Sen Chey at Olympic Stadium yesterday.
Teab Vathanak netted the game's only goal at the 22-minute mark as Naga continued in their quest to retain the Cup title.