As the National Team prepares for the home tie against Malaysia in the AFF Suzuki Cup next week, a private enterprise, the KMH Park situated on the outskirts of the city at Chaom Chao near the Phnom Penh International Airport, is all set to kick-off the eight-team, uniquely structured ISI Palm KMH Super Cup at the KMH Stadium on Saturday.
Launched two years ago as a semi-professional football stage for local teams with KMH Champions League and the U18 KMH Cup, the organisers expanded its size and scope this year by adding the Super Cup, involving teams drawn from various expat communities and enthusiastic overseas participants like European All Stars, African All Stars, Japanese All Stars, KMH All Stars, World All Stars, Khmer United, Beijing Family and Avatar FC.
The league returns with 32 teams already registered. The roster is also likely to be good for the U18 event. In all, a prize fund of little over $50,000 will be on offer for the series which will stretch well past the year into 2019.
For the showpiece event, the teams have been split into two four-team groups with the top two moving up to a criss-cross semi-finals and a title showdown. Group A has been made up of Khmer United, Japanese All Stars, KMH All Stars and European All Stars while Group B will be contested by World All Stars, African All Stars, Beijing Family and Avatar FC.
The tournament kicks off at 4pm with KMH Stars taking on the European contenders in the Group A opener.
There are plenty of big names who figured during the just concluded Metfone C-League season for the fans to follow. Nigerian sharpshooter George Bisan of NagaWorld, who ended the 2018 season as top scorer, and Preah Khan Reach Svay Rieng’s Shane Booysen will play alongside each other for the World Stars.
The African component has four leading players in Boeung Ket pair Julius Oiboh and Esoh Omogba, Dzarma Bata of Soltilo Angkor and Asia Euro United’s Momoh Degule Sumaila.
For Europe, 31-year-old English centre-back Martin McGuiness, Jamie Roy, Peter Downey, Dave Maguire, Christopher Grant and Ramo Som will add strength, while Sok Chanraksmey is the most recognisable league player representing Khmer United.
Timothy Okereke and Naga’s Anderson Zogbe are the ones to watch in the KMH Stars line-up, while Privat Mbarga, who had a fabulous season for AEU, will lead the Avatar charge.
Svay Rieng goalkeeper Om Oudom and National Police and Cambodia midfielder Ol Ravy are two promising league products turning out for Beijing Family.
The Japanese side has been bolstered by the presence of Takchito Ota, James Cameron, Naoki Nishyama and Yuji Kumura.
For the first time, the KMH Stadium is geared up to introduce an electronic ticketing system developed by Plovtech Solutions, Ireland, through local partners RSISA International.
There are three options for the fans to gain access to the stadium – Fan Card, E-ticket or Instant Ticket.
Fan Card is a regular membership card that allows access to games and other privileges. At $5, it is good for 12 games to watch. It also entails holders to enjoy discounts from partners and sponsors.
Available online, E-tickets can be obtained in advance for the match of the day. Instant tickets can be bought across the counter. All ticket types will be scanned on entry.
Meanwhile, Grab transport service will provide promotional codes for players and fans to get to the KMH Stadium during the Super Cup.