Top Teams Edge Ahead, in Early Season Play
HONG KONG—On Sunday Sept 18 a full schedule of 5 matches were played, 2 at HKFC and 3 at King’s Park.
The early match played at Hong Kong Football Club, Khalsa against HKFC-B, was the first run out of the season for Khalsa with a bit of a changed squad. Having brought in new players to replace several of their top players of last year, notably, Inderpal Singh, Ishtiaq Ahmed and Arif Ali, and defender Lu Peng also seemed to be missing, people were wondering how these changes would affect Khalsa’s team performance.
In the first half, Khalsa soon got on top and dominated play slotting home 6 goals. However, some of the stalwart up front attackers did not seem to be functioning as usual as many good chances also passed them by – but one could put this down to being match rusty. So it looked like it was business as usual and the gaps had been filled successfully, with maybe a hat-full of goals in the 2nd half.
The half time discussion for HKFC-B seemed to have a positive result and the second half was much more of an even contest. Although, Khalsa added a 7th goal after 5 minutes of the 2nd half, HKFC-B started playing more fluently and converted a goal 10 minutes into the half. However, although continuing to miss opportunities Khalsa added another 2 goals to finish the match 9-1.
HKFC-A vs HKCC-A
The even more entertaining game was the one played between HKFC-A and HKCC-A, with good spectator support for both sides, the match was played hard but for most of the game in good spirit and was enjoyable to watch.
After 2 seasons at the top division, Cricket Club have now established themselves and are highly competitive but for most of this match they packed the defence and effectively dealt with the many attacks from the home side. HKFC finally found the net with 12 minutes left of the half with an acute angled shot across goal by Ishtiaq Ahmed, touched over the line by team mate Wilson Lee. Football Club found the net again 5 minutes later with an almost duplicate goal this time Benjamin Sharples was the instigator but again converted by Lee to make the score 2-0 at half time.
But Cricket Club had not come just to sit back and absorb pressure, they put on a solid performance in the second half resisting all attacks and then increasingly became more adventurous, moving from defence to attack. They had a particularly good period starting with 13 minutes left on the clock, producing successive attacks on the Football Club goal. This pressure continued intermittently to the end of the match. Good running, good tackling and some fine play by both sides with increasing input from supporters adding to the atmosphere. Football Club held out but one was not sure who would win until the final whistle. Final score 2-0 to HKFC-A to stay top of the premier standings.
In the matches at King’s Park: KCC-A edged Valley-A 2-1, KNS-A showed their hockey skills beating Shaheen 7-1 and SSSC-A secured a 4-0 win over Pak-A.
On Sunday Sept 25 at HKFC, Pak-A play HKFC-B and HKFC-A hosts KNS-A, while at King’s Park KCC-A play SSSC-A, Valley-A meet HKCC-A and Khalsa-A take on Shaheen-A.