Grilled's good start to the season continued with a convincing 3-0 flattening of Hattrick all the time, though the superlative form of their American ex-international custodian Eric Alley had Grilled worried for ages. The lead from Martinsson's third minute opener always looked vulnerable, until Wai-Kin got a belated second.
With Singapore deep in the January monsoon, it was clear that the game would be played on land akin to a paddy field, much to the chagrin of Grilled's dedicated groundsmen. Luckily the drainage was up to par, and the pitch easily passed the pre-match inspection by the match officials.
Grilled were well prepared with their wet-weather studs, and the advantage showed immediately as Quah Han Kok
accelerated without mishap down the right and left French defender Mahmoud Ben Mohammed floundering behind. Martinsson was no slouch either, and despite being harried by Strassburger all the way, he managed to get a foot out and redirect Han Kok's low cross into goal.
Training in similar conditions for days meant that Grilled were in their element, especially against an optimistic HaTT side which reverted to an attacking 3-4-3. Against a side never famed for suffocating defence, Grilled created plenty of chances. Alley's reputation preceded him, however, as he willed up all his athletism to stubbornly keep the home team at bay.
Martinsson was the most frustrated, as he had three first-half attempts on goal that would have resulted in at least another goal on most days. Alley got fingers to Martinsson's neat back-flick header, then saved two lightning strikes through a general melee despite having his view blocked by outfielders both times.
In between, Kek-Tjiang could have added to his opening day goal, as Siu-Yue saw him inching his way into the box. The first-time grounder rolled onto the inside of the post, and inexplicably spun about in a puddle on the line before Alley leapt at it and fisted it to safety.
HaTT's three-man strikeforce of Craioveanu, Lennartsson and Donát had to pick at scraps as they got no service from midfield, but made themselves useful defending from the front. Grilled entered the second half with the same philosophy, but the drenched grass severely cramped Martinsson's free-flowing style.
Grilled's output was limited to a delicious hanging cross from van Liere that Martinsson rose to meet, but his strong header to the top of goal was once more denied by Alley. HaTT drew strength from their keeper, and Grilled appeared to be heading for a nervous finale with the slenderest of leads.
With six minutes of regular time remaining, Grilled's other winger came up with the all-important second goal. Hidde van Liere
broke through as HaTT were disorganized from putting together an offensive move, and got the ball to Wai-Kin in a three-on-two defensive situation. Martinsson looked a better choice as he was centrally placed, but Wai-Kin managed to beat Alley at his near post anyway.
Bereft of hope now, the visitors were easy pickings for Martinsson, who shook off his rather indifferent earlier performance. Taking on Strassburger by himself, the super Swede turned him inside out with a crossover dribble at full sprint, and then deposited a rising rocket past Alley's reach.