15 September 2012

DPMM FC closes gap on S-League champions Tampines

Friday, September 14, 2012
DPMM FC closed the gap on Singapore League (S-League) leaders Tampines Rovers FC with a 3-1 win over Young Lions last night.

Still third in the S-League, DPMM FC are now only three points adrift of the defending champions and current leaders - though the Stags, like second placed Albirex Niigata (S) FC, have played a game more.

Benjamin Kristoffersen Lee gave the hosts a 64th minute lead at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore only for DPMM FC captain Rosmin Kamis to equalise in the 71st minute. Left-back Sairol Hj Sahari gave the visitors the lead three minutes later and a 85th minute strike from Croatian Ivan Jerkovic would seal three valuable points as they head into the final five games of the season.

Brunei's only professional club have had a year to remember after capturing the Singapore League Cupfor the second time in August, but their recent form in the league where they have taken only four out of a possible 18 points since the second round kicked off on June 15 hasn't been anything to write home about.

"We feel good to be back to our winning ways," confided coach Vjeran Simunic.

"Now our focus is on preparing for Tanjong Pagar United FC (on September 23) before a tough game against Home United FC (on September 29)," was all he would say when asked what he felt about cutting the gap at the top of the table.

The loss leaves Young Lions, the Singaporean national Under-23 team, 10th in the table.

Simunic, though, feels their league standing is not an indicator of their true strength.

"They are one of the best teams in the league with four fantastic imports Lee one of them," praised the Croatian.

"This team is the future of Singapore football so I'm very proud we beat them ... It's a good day for Brunei football.

"I'm also very happy we were able to come back from 1-0 down to win the game," he added.

Injury concerns to key players midfielder Azwan Salleh was left in Brunei with a knee injury threatened to derail the team's plans in Singapore. Happily for Simunic, those concerns were put to the backburner last night.

"I want to thank (defender) Tales Ricarte dos Santos for playing. He was injured but he still played despite the doctor telling him not to ... Rosmin too," beamed Simunic. "He's a real captain!"

"(Defender) Pg Sallehuddin Pg Hj Damit also did well today despite not playing for a long time.

"I can't say any of of them deserves the Man of the Match award, they all do! From (goalkeeper) Wardun Yussof to (striker) Patrick Roberto Daniel Da Silva, they are all the 'Man of the Match'," he insisted.

Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC went past Woodlands Wellington FC 2-1 in last night's other game at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium in Singapore, the eight-time S-League champions consolidating their place in seventh with the win while Woodlands remain rooted to the bottom of the table. The Brunei Times

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