19 March 2011

BPL II teams told to raise their game

THE DST Group Brunei Premier League II might be the lower tier of the Brunei league, but it does not mean that the teams in the BPL II have lesser responsibility.

Football Federation of Brunei Darussalam (FFBD) deputy secretary-general Leftenan Kolonel Dr Hj Mohd Bahrin Bintang (pic) reminded the participating teams of their reponsibility to the local football scene during a BPL II managers meeting held at the Indoor Stadium of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas yesterday.

"Show your commitment in raising the level of football in the country. It will reflect on the federation's capability to run the leagues and, hopefully, it will become the foundation to bigger things in store for Brunei football," said the FFBD deputy secretary-general during the meeting, which was attended by the BPL II managers and Brunei Darussalam Football Referees Association general secretary Hj Omar Hj Sapar.

One of the highlights of the meeting was Rimba Star FC being informed that they can totally overhaul the squad before the league kicks off on March 25.

Other teams were required to send in their final squad list on March 11. The news will no doubt bring much relief to the league newcomers, who are still looking for players to fill up the 25-man roster.

According to Rimba Star coach Hj Norazmi PD Hj Abdul Razak, the team only have 17 players at the moment and still lack quality goalkeeper and midfielders.

His comments came after Rimba Star won 3-2 in extra time against the Royal Brunei Police Force's Sports Council during the BPL II qualifier final at the Berakas Sports Complex on Saturday night.

They beat out five other teams, including the policemen, for a spot in the BPL II.

The battle is only half over for Rimba Star. They now need to outperform nine teams in the BPL II to win a ticket to the top tier league in the local football scene, the BPL I, and it will not be an easy task to accomplish.

Also making their debut in the lower tier league are Brunei Shell FT (BSFT). However, unlike Rimba Star, who interestingly will be their first BPL II opponents this season on March 27, BSFT did not enter the BPL II under glamorous circumstances.

Having contested in the top flight ever since the first edition of the BPL back in 2002, BSFT reached their lowest point when they lost 4-2 against NBT FC in both teams' final match of the season last April. The result placed BSFT bottom of the 10-team BPL I and as a consequence they were automatically relegated.The Brunei Times

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