A second minute strike from Build Bright United’s Pich Sina was enough to see off TriAsia 1-0, despite a second half deluge of chances from the Japanese-backed club at Olympic Stadium on Saturday.
The victory takes BBU to fourth place, and team manager Olajide Peter said he believes they have an outside chance of mounting a title challenge.
“We are looking towards the league leaders now,” he said.
We are very confident and very positive we can catch them.”
Sina’s well-taken strike proved decisive and set the tone for the first twenty minutes, with BBU’s Rasheed Adeyanju looking threatening while Roem Bunheang’s free-kick was fumbled by Hak Dara in the TriAsia goal.
Sina nearly made it two in the 23rd minute, receiving the ball on the left wing after a clever switch of play left him with room to run at the defense, only to see his shot saved.
Chan Rithy had a spectacular left-foot strike from 45-yards tipped over the crossbar in the 33rd minute, an effort indicative of a first-half where the majority of attempts on goal came from outside the box.
TriAsia began to get a foothold toward the end of the first half and dominated from then on.
Kihara Masakazu was a thorn in the side of the BBU defense for the entirety of the second half, using his pace, skill and agility to weave his way into space and create chances.
He was prevented from scoring by some intrepid defending in the 56th minute as three BBU defenders blocked the Japanese forward’s shot in the box.
Mazakazu missed TriAsia’s best chance of the game three minutes later after Sok Chanrasmey was taken down by the BBU goalkeeper, Sos Proshim, in the box and was awarded a penalty.
Mazakazu stepped up, only to see his penalty saved to the dismay of a heavy TriAsia contingent in the crowd.
TriAsia created chance after chance as they piled men forward, but somehow failed to put the ball in the net, hitting the woodwork three times and stymied by some courageous, last-ditch BBU defending and a couple of first-class saves from Proshim.
TriAsia’s build up play was impressive with slick, creative interchanges behind the strikers and a genuine attempt to retain possession a welcome change to the hit-and-hope approach often seen in the C-League.
However, a lack of consistency and killer instinct has cost them at times this season and any chances of re-entering the title race seemed to disappear last night as their opportunities continued to go amiss until the final whistle blew.
Elsewhere, Boeung Ket managed to scrape through with a win against bottom club Albirex Niigata 2-1, while National Police destroyed Kirivong 5-0 and Svay Rieng soundly defeated Western University by the same impressive scoreline.
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