HRH Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah (2nd L), NFABD honorary president, witnessing YAM Pg Muda 'Abdul 'Aleem (L) conducting the draw for the opening match of the DST-National Football League 2011/2012 last night at the Berakas Sports Complex as Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Hj Hazair Hj Abdullah (2nd R) and Dato Paduka Hj Abdul Rahman Hj Mohiddin, the NFABD president, look on . Picture: BT/Yee Chun Leong
Kota Ranger were left crying in the rain last night when BSRC made a winning start to the DST-National Football League 2011/2012.
It was a wet opening to the new league, but more importantly a brace by Herman Hasnal secured Brunei Shell Recreation Club (BSRC) a 2-1 win over Kota Ranger in Group B at the Berakas Sports Complex in Berakas last night.
The two teams were drawn to play the opener during last night's opening ceremony, which was attended by His Royal Highness Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah, the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) honorary president. Accompanying HRH at the event was YAM Pg Muda 'Abdul 'Aleem.
Also in attendance was Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Hj Hazair Hj Abdullah, the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports.
The luck of the draw was not on the side of Kota Ranger as they only had eight players present at the start.
But BSRC failed to make the numerical advantage count the waterlogged pitch making it difficult for players to control the ball.
It was only after 10 minutes into the game that Kota Ranger managed to get a full team. They picked up the slack and had several chances on goal.
But it was Herman who found the back of the net for BSRC in the 27th minute after receiving a pass from the left to easily slot it past the Kota Ranger goalkeeper Hj Maswadi Hj Ismail for a 1-0 lead.
BSRC could have added a few more goals getting behind their opponents' backline to beat the offside trap several times, but wasted their chances.
Kota Ranger, meanwhile, looked tired and lost.
BSRC were going with the long ball and it was difficult to predict where the ball would bounce making life difficult for their opponents.
It was not until the 65th minute when a good through ball from the centre saw Herman outrun his defenders to blast it home from inside the penalty area to double BSRC's lead.
Kota Ranger lost the ball right at the restart and it seemed like deja vu but they were fortunate to see Mohd Fakhrullah's effort bounce off the post.
However, Kota Ranger did manage to pull one back through Afsaimie Affendi. BSRC defenders failed to defend a long ball, allowing the former to easily put one past BSRC goalkeeper Mohamad Sahrizal Abd Salim.
The assistant manager of BSRC Mohd Husaini Hj Ibrahim was delighted with the win and especially the three points.
"What was most important about tonight (Saturday night) was getting all three points since it's the opening match," said Mohd Husaini during an interview with The Brunei Times after the win.
"The weather wasn't very good so the players couldn't play to their full potential as well. I thought we could have scored at least three in the first half, but the pitch was quite muddy and we didn't get enough warm up before the game," he added.
The competition continues tomorrow with Miisa United going up against LLRC FT in Group A at the Berakas Sports Complex. The match kicks off at 8.15pm.
Courtesy from Brunei Times