30 March 2015

Brunei U-23 team go down fighting

bandar seri begawan
Monday, March 30, 2015
THE national Under-23 football team fell to their second defeat in the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) Under-23 Championship 2016 qualifiers after losing 2-0 to Indonesia in Jakarta yesterday.
Ahmad Nufiandani put Indonesia ahead in the 70th minutes at the Bung Karno Stadium before substitute Muchlis Hadi Ning Syaifulloh doubled the advantage three minutes from time to seal the victory.
Brunei kicked-off their campaign with a 5-0 defeat to South Korea.
Indonesia will play South Korea in their last qualifying game while Brunei will lock horns with Timor Leste on Tuesday.
Brunei are in Group H alongside hosts Indonesia, South Korea and Timor Leste for the March 27-31 event.
Brunei did not enter a team for the previous qualifiers two years ago which was formerly known as the AFC U-22 Championship 2013.
The 10 group winners and five best second-placed teams will qualify for the tournament proper in Qatar.

The Brunei Times

DPMM FC find Sergio to replace injured Fagan

Jason Thomas
Sunday, March 29, 2015
DPMM FC have roped in former Sporting Lisbon academy trainee Paulo Sergio to replace the injured Craig Fagan for the rest of the Singapore League (S-League) season.
Fagan will be sidelined for at least six months after a tear to his achilles tendon during last Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Home United FC at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas, and with the S-League having closed registration for new players on Friday, the club could not afford to waste any time finding another import forward.
Despite yesterday’s training session at the Jerudong Mini Stadium only his second with his new teammates, Sergio said he will not need long to get used to playing with them.
“Football is easy… There’s nothing special about it,” he grinned when asked whether he would find it hard to gel with so many new faces. “I like playing with the ball at my feet and I’m sure I can help my new team,” he added.
Playing centrally, Sergio’s intelligent movement and quick feet during yesterday’s friendly against the Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) helped set up a goal for midfielder Azwan Ali Rahman – who scored at the far post after receiving a quick pass from the Portuguese.
A product of the same academy which produced famed footballer such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Luis Figo, Nani, Ricardo Quaresma and Joao Moutinho, Sergio has already made an impression on DPMM FC coach Steve Kean.
“To get a player of his quality on such short notice… It was real hard work by the management,” Kean said.
“Coming from such a fabled academy... He has high pedigree. His biggest attribute is that he’s an all-round attacker and he can play as a shadow striker with Rafa (striker Rafael Ramazotti) or on either wing.
“He has great control, pace and final pass and you can give him the ball any where. The signs are good,” said the Scotsman.
DPMM FC are currently second in the S-League with seven points from three games and trail leaders Tampines Rovers FC by two points – though Kean’s side have one game in hand. They resume their campaign on April 4 against Hougang United FC before taking on Geylang International FC on April 16, both games which will be played in Singapore. The club, which finished as runners-up last season, conclude their three-game away stint with a tie against defending champions Warriors FC on April 14 before returning to the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium to face Singapore Cup champions Balestier Khalsa FC on May 1 and table-toppers Tampines on May 10.

The Brunei Times

Season starts next week

Yee Chun Leong
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
THE wait is finally over as Brunei’s top tier football competition, the DST Super League, will kick off next Wednesday.
This was confirmed by National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) Chairman Competition Committee Hj Mohd Noor Hj Hamid yesterday when contacted by The Brunei Times.
Newly promoted IKLS, who finished runners-up in the DST Premier League last season, will battle it out against the Royal Brunei Police Force Sports Council (MS PDB) in the opener at the Balapan Track and Field of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas.
Najip FC will take on Kilanas FC in the second match at the Tutong Sports Complex two days later.
All eyes will be on the clash of the titans on April 5 with two-time defending champions Indera SC up against two-time runners-up Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
Kick off for all three matches will be at 8.15pm. The other returning teams for the DST Super League are Wijaya FC and Jerudong FC.
DST Premier League champions Lun Bawang are the other promoted side while Tabuan Muda (the national Under-23 football team) are set to make their debut completing the 10-team competition.
Indera finished last season’s nine-team DST Super League with 43 points ahead of MS ABDB, who had 37 points.
The former won 14 games, lost one and drew one.
They scored a total of 51 goals and only conceded 14 throughout the campaign.
The DST Super League was initially slated to begin in February after the national football season started on Jan 24 with the 2015 Sumbangsih Cup, which Indera clinched after a 2-0 win over MS ABDB at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium.
However, it was postponed due to the national team’s participation in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

The Brunei Times

Fagan out for six months

Yee Chun Leong
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
ENGLISH forward Craig Fagan will be out for at least six months after suffering a tear to the achilles tendon on his left foot, handing DPMM FC a huge blow just three games into their Singapore League (S-League) campaign.
He picked up the injury in the first half of their match against Home United FC at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas on Saturday night and had to be replaced by Adi Said in the 37th minute.
DPMM FC coach Steve Kean can only hope for a speedy recovery for the Englishman who underwent surgery yesterday morning.
“The good news is that he already had surgery and like any surgery the next most important thing is rehab,” said the Scotsman in an interview with The Brunei Times after a training session yesterday at the Jerudong Mini Stadium.
“It is a major blow firstly, for player and secondly, to us. We just have to make sure his rehab is good and that he can continue his career as soon as possible.
“We want to wish Craig a speedy recovery. As a club we want to see if it is possible for us to recruit another player.
“We won’t have another player for at least the next two weeks and this is an opportunity for other players to take,” continued the former Blackburn Rovers manager.
Fagan, 32, last played for League One (English third-tier) side Gillingham FC before being released at the end of the 2013-14 season.
The forward spent most of his career playing for Hull City from 2005-2007 and from 2008-2010 when they were playing in the English Premier League.
Tampines Rovers FC are at the summit of the 10-team table with nine points from four matches while DPMM FC are two points back having played game less.
The trio of Albirex Niigata (S) FC, Home United FC and Warriors FC, who also have a game in hand, are all on six points.
DPMM FC will contest their next game, their first away fixture, against Hougang United FC at the Hougang Stadium in Singapore on April 4.
The Brunei Times


24 March 2015

Under-23s off to Indonesia

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

THE national Under-23 football team are going into the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) Under-23 Championship 2016 qualifiers in Jakarta as underdogs but are not going there without a fight.
Brunei are in Group H alongside hosts Indonesia, South Korea and Timor Leste for the March 27-31 event at the Bung Karno Stadium. Coach Stephen Ng Heng Seng knows the tall order they face but believes they can put up a good fight.
“This is a tough group and will be a good test as we are in the process of developing the players,” said Ng before their departure at the Brunei International Airport in Berakas last night.
“We are taking the qualifiers very seriously. But as much as we want to qualify, we have to be realistic.
“There are two very good teams (Indonesia and South Korea) who are well proven. We have prepared the boys to focus on the game and not get distracted and intimidated by the crowd against the hosts.
“The boys will gain from this experience having to play the giants of Asia and I believe that we can put up some good performances,” continued Ng.
The qualifiers are seen as a good build up for the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Singapore in June.
The squad was set up back in September before starting intensive training in early February.
The team underwent training in Thailand two weeks ago and had three friendly matches – one against a Division 1 team and two from Division 2.
“We lost all three games by a narrow margin but it is a good step forward,” said Ng.
“They made big improvement compared to couple months ago. They are more confident and composed.
“Technically they have improved and this is a good way to assess where we are now. We can see what we have to continue to work on to improve,” he said.
Brunei did not enter a team for the previous qualifiers two years ago which was formerly known as the AFC U-22 Championship 2013.
The 10 group winners and five best second-placed teams will qualify for the tournament proper in Qatar.

The Brunei Times

19 March 2015

Coaches agree that Brunei need more international games

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

BOTH Mike Wong  and Chen Kuei-Jen agreed that the only way for Brunei to improve is to play more competitive games.
Stand-in national football coach Wong is trying to look forward after their 2-0 defeat to Chen’s Chinese Taipei in their 2018 World Cup first round qualifier last night.
The Singaporean, who is the first coach from his country to lead a foreign national side, felt that their lack of experience was the biggest factor in the loss.
“We worked hard for the two games but we are unlike Chinese Taipei as the majority of them are experienced,” said Wong during the post-match press conference.
“They have played more competitive games whilst this is only our second game as a team. We were a bit nervous and we could have done better if more composed.
“Overall it was a good experience for the boys. We were competitive and showed that Brunei, who are second from bottom in the FIFA ranking... That (ranking) is not somewhere we should stay,” he added.
Chen agreed with Wong’s assessment that Brunei need to play more high-level games.
“Brunei will improve a lot in the next few years if they play more international games as they have many young players and have got a good future,” said Chen.
“At first we were a little bit relaxed after drawing them. We knew nothing about Brunei and they played better than we thought.
“But we lost at home (1-0 in the first leg) even though we really thought we could have easily won 2-0 or 3-0. We knew that we had to respect them and would need 100 or even 120 per cent to beat them tonight,” he added.
The result might not have gone the way he wanted, but Wong, who is the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam’s (NFABD) technical director, was still proud of his charges considering they only started training late January.
“We didn’t get the result we wanted to go to the second round but it was 8/10 in terms of the level of performance,” he opined.
“We should move forward from here and see what we can do for the next six months. As a team we have gone a level up compared to the last five years and we hope that teams in the Southeast Asian region will look as Brunei as a competitive team in region.
“I would say that we believe we’ve got some better players.
“Obviously we cannot say we have chosen the best 23, but we got the right 23 for these two games,” continued Wong.
Chen continued that he was not surprised that Brunei came out with a defensive set-up since they carried a one-goal advantage from the first leg.
“It was probably easier for us as the only way for us to qualify was to win. Our players were very patient and their performance tonight (Tuesday night) was 100 per cent,” he added.

The Brunei Times

World Cup dreams over

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A DEFENSIVE-MINDED Brunei were sent packing from the 2018 World Cup qualifiers after falling 2-0 to Chinese Taipei in the second leg of their first round qualifiers last night.
Goals in either half by Wang Ruei and Turkish-born Chu En-Le sealed the deal for the visitors at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas, the 2-1 loss on aggregate also meaning Brunei’s 2019 Asian Cup qualifying campaign has also come to an end.
The Wasps started with six defenders listed but did well to attack early on.
Their first opportunity came after skipper Azwan Salleh put in a long ball for Adi Said – who scored in the first leg in Chinese Taipei last week – to chase down, only for Chinese Taipei goalkeeper Lu Kun-Chi to come out of his box to clear. The ball got as far as Adi’s brother Shahrazen, but he couldn’t get his shot on target.
Chinese Taipei got forward in the 18th minute but captain Chen Po-Liang couldn’t get enough power on his header.
Azwan had an attempt from 25 yards out after winning the ball at midfield two minutes later but was unable to keep his shot down.
Brunei were forced to make a change the next minute after Ak Fakharazzi Pg Hassan – the host’s best player after producing several crosses down the right – picked up a back injury, making way for Abd Azizi Ali Rahman.
The visitors missed a chance in the 24th minute after Wang got a free header at the far post but failed to get it on target.
They came knocking again in the 27th minute, but Wardun denied Wen Chih-Hao from inside the box.
Brunei got on target for the first time in the 32nd minute with Adi taking a free-kick from 30 yards out which went straight to Lu.
The Wasps were made to sit back in their own half and Wardun had to push a tricky cross from the right over the bar a minute later.
Chinese Taipei had a good opportunity the next minute after Chu put Wang through inside the box, but Wardun did well to close out the shot.
The visitors deservedly broke the deadlock in the 37th minute after a corner to the near post was flicked on to Wang to fire it home for a 1-0 lead, with Po-Liang nearly doubling the lead by shooting just wide in the 44th minute.
Chinese Taipei carried their good momentum into the second half and threatened just four minutes in after Chu drifted to his right at the edge of the box and drove a shot just over the bar.
The visitors made it 2-0 in the 52nd minute after Chen Hao-Wei broke down the right and skipped past two Brunei defenders before sending in a cross into the box for Chu to head home.
Brunei almost responded immediately at the other end but Lu produced a fine save.
The visitors could have added to their advantage in the 63rd minute with Hao-Wei finding Chu again just inside the box, but the latter couldn’t fire past Wardun.
The rebound got back to Hao-Wei but was not able to put it on target.
Substitute Anaqi Sufi Omar Baqi tried a freekick from 25 yards but it went straight to Lu two minutes later.
The Wasps were desperate in search for goals but were exposed at the back each time they pushed forward, resulting in Wardun being kept busy.
Adi put Abdul Mu’iz Sisa through on goal in the 83rd minute but the latter miskicked it with his left foot.
The hosts looked like they would get on the scoresheet just before the final whistle, but Reduan Petara was denied by Lu at the near post.
Brunei were the only one of the five first leg winners not to go through to the second round.
Bhutan, the world's lowest-ranked football team at 209th, pulled off a major shock to reach the second round after stunning Sri Lanka 2-1 yesterday and 3-1 on aggregate, according to a Reuters report.
Timor Leste beat Mongolia 1-0 yesterday after a 4-1 win at home last week, and India also progress after a 0-0 stalemate with Nepal in Kathmandu following last week's 2-0 victory in the east Indian city of Guwahati.
French-born Thierry Bin scored for Cambodia in a 1-1 away draw with Macau, which was enough to seal a 4-1 win on aggregate.
The sixth tie between Pakistan and Yemen was postponed due to security reasons and will be switched to a neutral venue.
Yemen were already in Lahore for yesterday’s match and held a 3-1 lead over Pakistan in the first leg played in Doha due to security concerns in Yemen.
The Brunei Times

17 March 2015

Biggest game of my life’

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

NATIONAL team captain Azwan Salleh has called tonight’s 2018 World Cup first round qualifier against Chinese Taipei the biggest game of his life.
Brunei are looking to defend their one goal advantage which they earned when Adi Said scored in the 36th minute of the first leg at the National Stadium in Kaohsiung on Thursday, the goal ensuring the country it’s first win in the competition after losses in all 12 of their previous games.
Speaking during yesterday’s pre-match press conference, the experienced DPMM FC player said that the squad is all set for their home leg at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
“The players are all ready for the second game and we will put in 100 per cent,” promised Azwan.
“This is the biggest game of my life... As this is the biggest tournament that I have contested in,” added the 27-year-old left-back.
Brunei manager Hj Md Noor Hj Hamid acknowledged that Chinese Taipei were the better side last week but that their advantage – which was the first away goal the country has scored in 30 years competing in World Cup qualifiers – would prove crucial.
“We have the advantage with an away goal and if we win it is another bonus for us,” said Hj Md Noor during the press conference.
“Chinese Taipei are a very strong team as seen from the previous match… From statistics it was 60-40, but our players fought very well.
“We were very lucky as Chinese Taipei had many chances but our goalkeeper Wardun (Yussof) as well as our defence played well.
“We hope that people in Brunei will come and support us for this match,” continued Hj Md Noor at the Lecture Theatre of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
Chinese Taipei coach Chen Kuei-Jen admitted his team was upset after Thursday’s loss but insisted that the side have their minds firmly set on a win tonight.
“It is very simple. You win, you qualify,” said Chen.
“We are disappointed that we lost the first match but we’ve already forgotten about it.
“We are focused and prepared. This second game is more important as we are looking for the win,” he said, adding that the match will be “very interesting and exciting”.
Kick off is at 8.15pm.
Meanwhile, the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) would like to inform the public that admission to the match is free of charge.
However, as per FIFA’s requirements, NFABD will give away tickets at the gate entrance to ensure to record the number of spectators. NFABD has prepared 10,000 tickets; 2,000 for the roofed section and 8,000 for unroofed section.
Spectators can still enter the stadium provided it does not exceed the stadium’s 20,000 capacity.
Entrance for both gates open at 5.45pm.
Other games will see Bhutan, ranked 209th and last by FIFA, take a 1-0 lead into the second leg of their tie with Sri Lanka
Timor Leste hold a 4-1 advantage over Mongolia while Pakistan trail Yemen 3-1.
India take a 2-0 lead to Nepal while Cambodia head to Macau with a healthier 3-0 advantage.

The Brunei Times, Reuters

13 March 2015

Brunei make history

Friday, March 13, 2015

IT WAS history made and advantage Brunei!
The national football team secured a vital 1-0 away win over Chinese Taipei in the first leg of their 2018 World Cup first round qualifier at the National Stadium in Kaohsiung last night, earning Brunei its maiden triumph in the competition after loses in all 12 previous games.
Adi Said’s 36th minute goal after a mix-up in the host’s defence was also the first away goal Brunei has scored in World Cup qualifiers in 30 years, making the night all the more special for the striker.
“This is the most important goal I’ve ever scored,” 25-year-old Adi told The Brunei Times.
“I got in front of the goalkeeper (and) I don’t know what happened with that goal because Fakharazzi (midfielder Ak Mohd Fakharazzi Pg Hassan) crossed the ball into the keeper,” he added, the victory handing Singaporean Mike Wong Mung Heng a winning debut as the national team’s coach.
The ball got to Ak Mohd Fakharazzi on the right before he put in a high cross which was misjudged by Chinese-Taipei custodian Chiu Yu-Hung and headed home by Adi (2nd photo).
The result is also the national team’s first victory in over two years, their last coming in October 2012 when they beat Timor Leste 2-1 during qualifiers for that year’s ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup.
The Sultanate started the match with seven DPMM FC players - Adi and Ak Mohd Fakharazzi among them - but it was mostly Chinese-Taipei in the early going.
The hosts almost broke the lead in the 33rd minute after Li Mao rounded Wardun Yussof, but his shot was cleared by Mohd Hanif Hamir.
The deadlock was broken three minutes later off a Brunei throw in, with Ak Mohd Fakharazzi putting in a cross which Adi lapped up.
Chinese Taipei had a good chance just before the half-time whistle with a free-kick from 25 yards out, though Wen Chih-Hao only floated it over the crossbar.
The hosts were pushing forward but never really threatened, and it was only in the 76th minute that Wardun was required to save a shot from outside the box.
The Brunei shotstopper came to the rescue of the Wasps again five minutes later when Chinese Taipei skipper Chen Po Liang tried a shot from range which took a deflection before dropping in front of goal.
Substitute Wu Chun Ching pounced on the ball but Wardun produced a spectacular save.
Brunei almost killed off the game in the 84th minute after good pressure by substitute forward Abd Azizi Ali Rahman, who came on for younger brother Azwan eight minutes earlier.
Abd Azizi dispossessed Chen Ting-Yang inside the box but the latter managed to recover to block the shot.
The Wasps soaked up the pressure and Chinese Taipei should have equallised in injury time.
Chen put Wen through on goal inside the box, but Abdul Mu’iz Sisa cleared the ball off the line.
The second leg will be contested on Tuesday at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas and entrance will be free.
The result of the final of the six first round qualifiers last night, Yemen’s tie against hosts Pakistan, was not available as of press time.

The Brunei Times

06 March 2015

Brunei name World Cup Qualifiers players

Friday, March 6, 2015

THE National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) yesterday released the 23-players’ list for the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers.
The press release stated that Hj Mohd Noor Hj Abdul Hamid was appointed as the manager of the team.

Mike Wong Mung Heng will be the head coach of the team and he will be helped by assistant coach Dayem Hj Ali.

Players from DPMM FC and Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) made up the majority of the squad (seven from DPMM and six from MS ABDB), while the rest are from the DST Super League clubs. The list is as follows:

Goalkeepers: Wardun Mohd Yussof (DPMM FC), Mohd Tarmizi Hj Mat Johari (MS ABDB) and Ak Mohd Mu’izzuddin Pg Ismail (Najip FC).

Defenders: Mohd Syarafuddin Hamdi Talip (MS PDB), Abdul Mu’iz Sisa (Indera SC), Mohd Afi Aminuddin (Indera SC), Azwan Muhd Salleh (DPMM FC), Mohammad Mazazizi (MS ABDB), Mohd Hanif Amir (Najip FC), Affendy Hj Akup (MS ABDB), Hazwan Hamzah (Indera SC), Reduan Hj Petara (DPMM FC), Hj Mohammad Yussof Hj Mat Yassin (MS ABDB) and Azri Zahari (Najip FC).

Midfielders: Ak Mohd Fakharrazi Pg Hj Hassan (DPMM FC), Azwan Ali Rahman (DPMM FC), Ak Safri Pg Hj Othman (MS ABDB), Mohammad Nazri Hj Hassan (DSP) and Mohd Mardi Mirza Abdullah Bujang (QAF FC).

Forwards: Shahrazen Said (DPMM FC), Adi Said (DPMM FC), Ak Mohd Anaqi Sufi Pg Omar Baqi (Wijaya FC) and Abdul Azizi Ali Rahman (MS ABDB).

Brunei will face Chinese Taipei on March 12 and 17, with the second leg to be played in Brunei. The Sultanate is ranked 198th in the latest FIFA rankings while Chinese Taipei are 182nd.
Brunei last attempted to qualify for the World Cup during the 2002 edition in South Korea and Japan - where they lost all six of their games against Yemen, the United Arab Emirates and India.
The inclusion of Brunei and Bhutan in this year’s qualifiers makes it the first time that all 209 FIFA members have registered to take part in World Cup qualifiers, a Reuters report stated.
The six winners from the first round fixtures will join the region’s 34 other teams in the second round, where they will be drawn into eight groups of five.
The group winners and four runner-ups will advance to the 12-team third round and also book spots at the 2019 Asian Cup finals in a new qualifying format being used by the AFC.
The 12 World Cup hopefuls will then be drawn into two groups of six, with the top two likely to qualify for Russia and the two third place sides probably playing off with the winner advancing to the intercontinental tie.
The 24 teams who do not reach the third round stage will take part in another tournament to fill the remaining spots at the newly expanded 24-team Asian Cup.
The Brunei Times

Hat-trick hero Ramazotti stars in DPMM FC debut

Monday, March 2, 2015

RAFAEL Ramazotti bagged a hat-trick in his debut as DPMM FC kicked off their Singapore League (S-League) campaign with a 3-1 win over Harimau Muda.
The Brazilian striker opened the scoring in the 24th minute when he headed home midfielder Azwan Ali Rahman’s corner from the right at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
The 27-year old scored his second with a fantastic volley from 30-metres out before completing his hat-trick just eight minutes after the restart in the second-half.
“I am very happy…first game it is always difficult and hard to score…I think I was very lucky but again this is a result of the training…hard training,” said Ramazotti in an interview with The Brunei Times after the match.
“I am very happy to be in this club and to score a hat-trick is very good for me…but I think Fagan (Craig Fagan) played very good tonight and I think he will score in the next game,” he added.
Earlier in the first-half striker Fagan almost gave DPMM FC the lead when he was picked unmarked inside the penalty box by Azwan Ali Rahman but the striker header went awfully wide.
DPMM dominated the possession from the start passing the ball around but they failed to get past the Harimau Muda defensive line.
Harimau Muda midfielder Sharul Igwan brought the first save of the game from Wardun Yussof after being allowed to run for far too long with the ball following a counter attack.
Harimau Muda goalkeeper Farhan Abu Bakar was called into action shortly midfielder Hendra Azam Idris fired shot just inches wide from outside the penalty box.
DPMM finally broke the deadlock when Ramazotti rose above every one inside the penalty box to head in Azwan Ali’s corner to give his team a 1-0 lead.
Harimau Muda were punished again in the 40th minute when they failed to clear long ball from DPMM own half - the ball fell right in front of Ramazotti and the striker slammed the ball first time straight into the net leaving goalkeeper Farhan no chance at all. DPMM FC continued to control the game in the second-half and they found the net again in the 53rd minute when midfielder Joe Gamble brilliantly picked Ramazotti on the left and the latter blasted the ball into the net with his left foot as he completed his hat-trick.
Harimau Muda did make a few chances notably when striker Kumaahran Sathasivam header went just wide but apart from a couple of attempts from free-kicks and shot from outside the penalty box the home side did not manage to put much together to trouble centre-backs Boris Raspudic and new import Brian Mclean in defence. Harimau Muda however managed to pull one back in the 90th minute when Ridzuan Abdullah Punlo was given plenty of space just from outside of the penalty box.
DPMM manager Steve Kean was happy with his team’s performance and the manager singled out Ramazotti for praise.
“I think what you’ve probably seen tonight is just a glimpse of what Rafa (Ramazotti) can bring to the club,” said Steve Kean in the post match conference.
“He’s obviously a fantastic player and he can also score any type of goal…He scored a goal with his left foot which was not his strongest and he’s probably unlucky not to get another couple of goals.
“But what I must say is that it’s not just about Rafa tonight it’s also the service of the whole team and Craig Fagan also did very well and as did Azwan Ali…they were exceptional.
“We’ve got a lot of quality on the squad so it’s never just about one player but obviously Rafa would get the headlines because of his goals but I thought the two central defenders tonight were also exceptional (Raspudic and Mclean)…they really pushed Harimau Muda high up the pitch and won lots of balls, especially in the first half.
“I’m really impressed with how the squad is coming together tonight as a team and a bigger picture the squad is very strong.
“We got a bit greedy when we were 3-0 up, you want to score four and five goals, and that’s no disrespect to Harimau Muda but when we’re so far ahead in the game, we were hoping to put more goals in the tally, and we were a little bit annoyed that we didn’t get a clean sheet but there was a deflection at the end and it was a tough one for Wardun,” he added.

The Brunei Times