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Naga edge Crown; Boeung Ket hit seven

Chan Vathanaka (pictured in white).
Chan Vathanaka (pictured in white). Hong Menea

Naga edge Crown; Boeung Ket hit seven

Boeung Ket Angkor romped to a 7-0 win over CMAC at the Olympic Stadium on Friday, due largely to a Chan Vathanaka hat-trick, but it was Saturday’s twilight clash at the same venue in which NagaWorld beat arch rivals Phnom Penh Crown 2-1 that grabbed the weekend’s headlines. In Saturday’s other fixture, Cambodian Tiger FC defeated Asia Europe United 3-1.

After a 2-0 first-half lead, Boeung Ket turned the second half into a routine target practice as they pumped five more through the porous CMAC defence.

Chan Vathanaka showed his customary elan in his treble strike and Omogba seized the moment with a brace of his own. Kazu and Hong Pheng completed the tally for coach Prak Sovanara’s side.

The wildly anticipated repeat of last season’s title-decider between NagaWorld and Phnom Penh Crown lived up to its hype, giving coach Meas Channa’s team the morale booster that it was so desperately seeking after a somewhat colourless show in the first two fixtures of the season.

Barely a minute into the game, Kouch Sokhumpheak dealt a shock of sorts to his former club with an instinctive flick off a centre that had come into his path, Crown responded to this early jolt with a couple of good attempts even as Naga tried hard at the other end for consolidation.

After the breather, Naga doubled their lead in the 65th minute when Mbarga, lurking within touching distance of the post, nodded in Sun Sovanarithy’s cross.

Crown’s hopes of a fightback were revived 10 minutes from time when Sean Pissa found the top corner of the net from inside the box.

The six time champs went all out in search of an equaliser but Naga stood up well to the pressure to bag their first win of the season. After a win against the Cambodian Tiger FC and goal-less draw with the Police, this was Crown’s first defeat.

Meanwhile yesterday, Ministry of National Defence scored their third straight win after outplaying Western Phnom Penh 5-1 at the Western Stadium.

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