Reversal Of Fortunes
This would probably count as the first real dip for Hilal Bakhtiar
's team, and the head coach was at a loss to explain Grilled's sudden inability to put games away. He did acknowledge the popular analysis that they had released too many of their experienced winners in the post-season, but reiterated that some transition had to be done.
"It's not like we packed half the starters off." Bakhtiar retorted. "You can taken me on about this, but I think we were just unlucky again. We had most of the best chances, but Villains played for the draw, and they got it. Fair do's to them."
Haha has solidly established themselves as favourites for their first S-League title with three wins in a row, as Vishvesharaiyah Gudivada's penalty earned them full points against an obstinate Robbie Football Club. Random Curiosity FC crushed a waning Crypto Moon 5-0 to go third, and Sarcastic Fringeheads rebounded with a 2-0 win at -= Manchester United =-, that saw Horst Friedrich Dalen limp off early with an injury to his inner thigh.
Bakhtiar acknowledged that Haha were looking very good right now. "They are grabbing the points they should, and maybe some they shouldn't - and that's what champions need to do. We aren't conceding just yet, but it will be difficult."
Contrary to the Birds' slump, both Farmer Bunnies and Grilled International would lead their respective leagues, as they made it a perfect nine points from nine. The Buns would be effortlessly dominant for once versus stragglers Rivervale Titans, with Sunil Patel
, Vishnu Tallapaka
and Billy Camperio
putting them 3-0 up by the 16th minute. Ibrahim Zahran Al-Maashany
headed in a cross in the second half to complete the scoring, a bit after Lim Su Liang
had to go off due to a twisted right ankle.
Bukit Gombak's upset of The Sing Tigers further leaves Farmer Bunnies three points clear of everyone else, and returning second-half substitute Wong Ting Yew
was insistent that they were going to win the league. "I maintain that we are too good for the third division, even during a rebuild." the veteran said. "A Challenger Cup isn't out of the question either!"
Grilled International cut it rather closer in their trip to the Maldives to play The Sun men, as the hosts raced to a two goal lead by the 33rd minute, after a fabulous counterattacking long pass by Nadh Didi that split International's defence asunder. International were back on level terms by half-time, though, and Li Xin Chi
would have them 4-2 up by the 63rd minute, as he completed what was a great team goal. Nischal Anfal's reducer in injury time would leave the fans on edge for the next few minutes, but that was as far as they got.
Livius International are now closest to Grilled International following their 9-0 gimmie at Michenvillage FC, which has them on seven points. Head coach Didi Reidenbach
exhorted his squad to focus on themselves, regardless. "We just have to keep on winning, and not care about what the other clubs do. Just stay in the flow."