Reigning Metfone C-League champions Phnom Penh Crown produced a remarkable reversal yesterday against National Police Commissary to put an end to their woeful start to the season and kick-start their pursuit of a third title in a row.
Facing a three-goal deficit at half- time, Crown answered their coach David Booth’s rally cry to register four unanswered strikes in the second for a memorable victory at Olympic Stadium.
The Police team, the league’s early leaders, had begun brightly with a sixth-minute goal from Say Piseth.
Red-hot Nigerian striker Nelson Oladiji doubled, and then trebled, their advantage on 18 and 39 minutes to put his side firmly in the driving seat.
But despite losing three of their first four games, the titleholders were in no mood to lie down.
Crown’s new Ghanaian signing, Emmanuel Frimpong, pegged one back on the hour mark. The midfielder reduced the gap further on 77 minutes via a penalty to give them more than a glimmer of hope.
With just four minutes of regulat-ion time remaining, Hong Pheng levelled the scores to send the fans into raptures. But they were not done there.
Cambodia’s most famous export, Khim Borey, who returned to his former club this year after completing a season with Thai Premier League side Sisaket FC, stepped up to claim hero status once again with a winning goal two minutes later.
Police coach ung Kanyanith was left kicking himself after substituting keeper Thong Chanrasmey for Prak Phearun moments before Crown began their comeback. The younger brother of national team midfielder Prak Mony Udom was responsible for two of the four Crown goals.
Boeung Ket beat back BBU 2-0
In yesterday’s late kick-off, Boeung Ket Rubber Field dispatched Build Bright United with clinical 2-0 victory. The Kampong Cham side went ahead through a Nwakuna Friday header on 31 minutes before fellow Nigerian Degule Momoh added a second on 44 minutes.
The win saw league debutants Boeung Ket take a share of the top spot with National Police on nine points, the latter retaining their lead by virtue of a superior goal difference. Crown jumped up to fifth, while BBU were left wallowing in eighth.