Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Vathanaka hat-trick keeps Boeung Ket on top



Vathanaka hat-trick keeps Boeung Ket on top

Boeung Ket’s Chan Vathanaka scores the first of his hat-trick against Phnom Penh Crown yesterday.
Boeung Ket’s Chan Vathanaka scores the first of his hat-trick against Phnom Penh Crown yesterday.

Vathanaka hat-trick keeps Boeung Ket on top

Striker Chan Vathanaka produced a brilliant hat-trick wearing the captain’s armband to steer Boeung Ket Angkor to a 3-2 win over defending champions Phnom Penh Crown, who fired the first salvo in the fifth minute of the key Metfone C-League clash at Olympic Stadium yesterday evening.

A late Crown goal from Keo Sokpheng and several near misses in the closing stages led to a thrilling climax, but two sensational saves by Boeung Ket goalkeeper Sou Yaty in those frenzied moments ensured coach Prak Sovanara’s team three precious points.

The victory sees Boeung Ket retain their one-point advantage over rivals Ministry of National Defence, who on Saturday kept the pressure on the leaders with a 2-1 win over Preah Khan Reach Svay Rieng at Old Stadium.

After honours were even at half-time, with Svay Rieng’s Obi levelling Keo Vannak’s 12th minute goal, Armyman Sor Piseth’s 82nd-minute goal settled the tie in the home side’s favour.

With the Army win adding to the burden of expectation, Boeung Ket found themselves quickly behind when South Korean Jan In-yong scored.

The early Crown goal, however, acted as a spur for Boeung Ket. Approaching the 30-minute mark, Vathanaka worked his way into Crown’s box and unleashed a stinging left-foot shot past goalkeeper Keo Soksela’s outstretched right leg.

Emboldened by the equaliser, Vathanaka’s second goal came under much easier circumstances, and almost at the stroke of half-time. All Vathanka had left to do this time was to tap in a clever short pass inside the box by Dzarma Bata.

Having dragged themselves in front, Boeung Ket saw Vathanaka cushion the lead in the 54th minute.

Meanwhile, third-placed NagaWorld scored a comfortable 4-1 win over CMAC United. Sary Matnortin, Khim Borey, Richard and George Kelechi scored a goal each for Naga. The lone consolation for CMAC came from the penalty spot in injury time.

Two MCL matches have been carded for Wednesday, with NagaWorld, who are heading to the AFC Cup qualifying playoff in Mongolia later this week, meeting National Police at the Olympic Stadium, while Crown are to meet Western at the RSN Stadium.

MOST VIEWED

  • Chinese tourists 2.0 – Coming anytime soon?

    Regional tourism is grappling with the absence of the prolific travellers and big spenders – the Chinese tourists. Cambodia, which has welcomed over two million Chinese tourists before Covid-19, is reeling from the economic loss despite being the first to fully open last November ‘To put

  • Hun Sen: Stop Russia sanctions

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said sanctions against Russia as a result of its military offensive in Ukraine should be stopped as they have produced no tangible results, and predicted that a global food crisis would ensue in 2023 as a consequence. Speaking to an audience at

  • PM reflects on shoe throwing: Free speech or act of violence?

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on May 17 questioned whether a man who threw a shoe at him while he was in the US was exercising freedom of expression or if it was an act of hostility. Hun Sen was referring to an incident last week when

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen warmly welcomed by president Biden

    Prime Minister Hun Sen, as ASEAN chair, and other ASEAN leaders were warmly welcomed by US president Joe Biden as the ASEAN-US summit May 12-13 kicked off today in Washington. “This evening, I welcomed ASEAN leaders to the White House for the first time in

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen invites US president to attend summit in Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen personally invited US President Joe Biden to attend the ASEAN-US Summit which is set to be held in Cambodia in November, as ASEAN and the US are expected to upgrade their strategic partnership to a ‘comprehensive strategic partnership’, according to Prime

  • Pub Street on the cards for Battambang

    The Battambang Provincial Authority has announced that it is considering establishing a Pub Street in the area around the heritage buildings in Battambang town in a bid to attract more tourists. Battambang provincial governor Sok Lou told The Post that the establishment of a Pub