Pride of Farmer
Grilled head coach Hovaness Noubaryan
could only shrug at the fickleness of it all. "Football, you never know what's happening next. I don't agree with the penalty either, but let's not take too much from Mia San - they persevered. A lesser team would have given up, after losing a two-nil lead."
was apparently not ready to forgive and forget, though, from how the winger unleashed a tirade against Jerry Lim on his Twitter. Lim's response was to rub it in, which may signal the start of a feud between the duo.
The Birds' new quest will thus be to win an unprecedented third Ruby Challenger Cup, and their first obstacle will be III.14 side Winti Tigers, who earned their passage with a 4-3 win over Ang Mohs in flip flops. Joining the Birds will be such illustrious names as Ropelearner FC, littlehorse and even current S-League leaders Arrogancae, who had been defeated by the Farmer Bunnies.
The Buns had stayed true to Dalibor Kostadinović
's hints, as they came out in an ultra-defensive 5-5-0 formation. Namdar Zarar
gave them a 29th minute lead from a chaotic indirect free-kick, and try as Arrogancae might, there was no way back. Aswad Mohd Jafni
did a great marking job on Ruddy Lora, severely limiting his options, and Brendan Leung
would be eased back into action, after Sofian Azfar
got a late knock.
This more than made up for the Buns' loss on penalties in the Sapphire Challenger Cup from three seasons back, and they will next face defending S-League holders Bot Team FC, the former Young Tigers. Buns captain Tham Leng Teck
was not about to be overawed.
"We denied Arrogancae today, there's no reason at all why we can't do the same to Bot Team FC next week." he boasted, with some justification.
It was however the end of Grilled International's cup ambitions, after a 1-2 loss to Austria's R.R.R. Rennschwein Rudi Rüssel in the H.I. Emerald Challenger Cup. Micky bin Kadir
's 41st minute strike - his first for a season - seemed to have gotten International to extra time, but Valentin Riemer decided it in injury time, with Zaini bin Hj Kaling
sent off for contesting the goal.
defended fielding a weakened side. "We need to save our resources for the league. It's been a right inspiring run, but expecting too much more isn't realistic at this stage."