FOR over an hour, Boeung Ket were weighed down by an early Visaka FC goal, but the defending champions hit back to force a 1-1 draw over the newcomers at Western Stadium on Sunday.
The Metfone C-League leaders were caught napping when the free-wheeling Choe Myong-ho volleyed from close range 13 minutes into the game after the North Korean got unfettered access to the box to greet a cross from the right wing.
The debutants threatened more while zealously guarding that slender lead as Boeung Ket grew increasingly desperate despite going close more than once.
Eventually, Julius Oiboh produced a header of quality off a long ball in the 76th minute to force a draw and help maintain Boeung Ket’s status as the only unbeaten side in 10 weeks of action.
Last week’s six-goal tormentor of Western, Privat Mbarga was again in his element as his double helped a goal-down AEU to complete a 2-1 win over the visitors from Svay Rieng, Preah Khan Reach, at the AEU Sports Park on Saturday.
The beleaguered Hun Sen Cup winners saw Shane Booysen give them a 35th-minute lead. But they had to reckon with Mbarga’s aggressive response. The Cameroonian striker levelled the score just before halftime and produced the match winner in the 85th minute.
On the top of the team suffering a string of defeats, several players have also been hit with fines and suspensions after an on-pitch row in their game against Ministry of National Defense two weeks ago.
In Saturday’s other matches, National Police defeated Siem Reap-based Angkor Tiger, an own goal from the visitors sealing their fate. The Tigers were given a dream start by Okamoto in the eighth minute. After Tit Dina equalised for Police early in the second half, Fukasawa’s own goal in the 78th minute proved decisive.
Another Siem Reap team, Soltilo Angkor, could not sustain their early advantage over the Ministry of National Defence, whose strong second-half show gave them a 3-1 win.
Yuta Kikuchi was on target for Soltilo within ten minutes but goals from Roeung Bun Heang, Oup Kamol and Kan Pisal in the second half netted the Army all three points