Kakis Check Out
Sick Sid Streak
The versatile Sylweriusz "Sid" Zywczyn continued to hold his lead at the top of Grilled's scorers' chart, notching his ninth competitive goal of the season at an opportune moment in Grilled's fifth-round Cup tie. The wingback's closest rivals are Jaan Kadak
and Ulf Hjortlind
, both who also got on the scoresheet today, and whom are both on four goals.
The writing was on the wall for Changi club Golden Kakis, who were good enough to overwhelm Temasek Gryphons 3-1 but now faced Grilled's heartbeat, Shen Kek-Tjiang
in the libero's role. This modified formation was a fair bit stronger than what most punters expected Grilled to roll out, but the Kakis were no pushovers and played their own game.
The hot-tempered Ulf Hjortlind
got involved in an ugly incident just six minutes into the match, as he stomped on opposition midfielder Erik Rosta after the Hungarian had done some dogged tracking back to tackle Hjortlind cleanly. Rottman leapt to his teammate's defence, and was joined by several footballers from both sides before the referee flashed the yellow card and gave Hjortlind a long talking-to.
Rosta was out on the sidelines for a few minutes as Kakis continued with ten men, and got a resounding cheer from the relieved fans when he walked back on and gave the stands a wave. Kakis' all-foreign side, excluding reserve goalkeeper Raja Azlan Shah bin Amiruddin, held their lines courageously, only to be undone by more expatriate talent. Danish midfielder Terkel Borup
was put through by van Liere, and slammed one into the far corner of goal.
The match was opened up by that goal, and Grilled could have made it two as Kakis struggled to regain their stride. Another quick raid down the left saw van Liere tear pass Flox Groenewegen after selling the Dutch defender a dummy, but Kadak was atrocious with his blind hack at the cross. Less power, more accuracy was what the Estonian could have been mouthing as a simple sitter clattered off the crossbar.
Grilled deserved to be punished for that glaring miss, and they were. Cedric van Adrichem, a S$604 000 arrival direct from Celebessie United, combined with his partner Gabi Mares and embellished the move with a mesmerising dribble through a static Anders Fredgård
. Bao-Tam took his time to come out, and was helpless on his line as van Adrichem calmly sidefooted in the equaliser.
This could have presented a real threat to Grilled, with half-time fast approaching. A revitalised Kakis side would not be academic to get through, and Grilled really needed to get the job done in regular time. Several regulars were fielded, and they had a tough fixture with Team Singapore ahead.
Sid came galloping to the rescue again, with Bukhari playing sidekick by earning a free-kick without even touching the ball from the kick-off. Sid gauged the distance, and his classic banana strike closed the twenty metres from the spot to goal in what appeared a split-second. Kakis' Christopher Davies couldn't even begin to guess which direction it had gone, when it found the back of his net.
That more or less killed off their rediscovered exuberance, and Grilled put a lid on the game with Kadak drifting in from the wings to poach a third. Jie Siong was totally unguarded in the centre, but Kadak had eyes only for goal as he steamed right on and hit it hard and straight.
An entertaining period of soccer then emerged, as Grilled sat back while Kakis recklessly pushed forward in search of a lifeline. In the heat of play, Milo Vignjevic forgot that he had the option to pass all the way back when he was challenged by Kek-Tjiang, and promptly lost possession to the 30 year-old's sharp tackle. Kek-Tjiang sent a fabulous lob overhead to van Liere, but the Dutch star lost his footing and couldn't get the vital takedown.
Fredgård won points for not taking any chances with van Adrichem when the latter threatened to whizz past him in a repeat of the first goal, though he was given what looked like a harsh yellow card for his marginal tackle. The free-kick went straight into the Grilled wall, though, and Hjortlind caught Kakis napping with a thunderous finish to truly seal the win.