EFL Qualifying Division 2011/2012
Vipers AS. 3 - 2 J-Heat.
Scorer(s): Pek Jia Hao (18’)
Jason Wong (35’)
Lu Fang Yi (60’)
Vipers AS got a small measurement of revenge when they edged out J-Heat 3-2 in a pulsating encounter that saw lots of end-to-end action. Youngster Jia Hao countined his rich vein of form by making it three goals in as many games, while Jason Wong scored his first league goal for Vipers AS, before Fang Yi’s netted on the hour what proved to be the match winner.
Vipers AS started with a normal 4-4-2 formation, with Ewan between the post. Siwei, Parry, Wayne and Cheng Yao as the flat back four, protected by the midfield duo of Tuan and Mohamad. They are being flanked by Kevin and Jia Hao, with Nur and Eddie the two strikers starting up front.
Chances are few at the start, possession being shared by both sides. Vipers perhaps just shaded it with goals attempts, but J Heat kept the ball better. In the 18th minute, J Heat lost the ball just pass the half way line, triggering a Viper counter attacks that ended with Eddie laying the ball off for Jia Hao to run into the penalty box. He made no mistakes as he put the ball beyond the diving keeper’s hand into the far bottom corner.
J Heat falls further behind in the 35th minute via a great piece of team play by Vipers AS. From midfield, Tuan played a through ball into the penalty box. Jason sold the J-Heat defender a dummy, allowing the overlapping Mohamad to latch on to the ball right at the by line. He then put in a low cross which was missed by two defenders, and Jason had the simplest of task of stroking the ball over the line from just two yards out.
J-Heat did manage to pull a goal back right on the stroke of half time through some luck. Their tall striker headed in a goal when a long cross by J Heat deflected off Cheng Yao’s head, rebounded off the crossbar and fell just nicely for him right in front of goal.
Vipers AS had a perfect chance to regain their two goal lead in the 50th minute, when Tuan won a penalty after being brought down in the box. He wasted the penalty however, as his shot just breeze pass the foot of the right post with the keeper already diving the opposite direction.
Vipers AS then went on to miss a number of chances in the next few minutes, and were made to pay when J-Heat equalized in the 58th minute. A curling cross from the left sliced open the Vipers defense, allowing a J-Heat striker to run between the two center backs and slot it under the advancing Ewan.
Barely had J-Heat finished celebrating the equalizer when Vipers retook the lead. Fang Yi intercepted a short pass from the J-Heat keeper to his right back. He then surged into the penalty box, shrugged off the defenders challenge, and volleyed the ball pass the diving keeper and into the top left corner of goal.
With the clock ticking down, J-Heat started to pepper Vipers AS’ goal mouth in a hope to savage something from the game. They would have gotten a goal if not for two great saves by Ewan, once in the 70th min when he dived low to his left and palm away a shot off a corner, and another in the 75th minute when he came off his line for a sliding save when the striker went through in a one on one. At the end, Vipers AS held on for their first back to back wins of the season.
Wayne hails midfield performance
Veteran Wayne Sim Szewei paid tribute to the Vipers AS midfield after a combative display earned the team some crucial points in a tight Qualifying Division.
He said, “We won today because our midfield worked hard. There was non-stop harassing in the right areas, and that made Parry and my job so much easier. Credit to them for a job well done.”
“It was good playing today, great team win. The result would not have mattered as much to me, because we showed great teamwork and great fighting spirit. There is strength in depth today with many subs on the bench. Hopefully the commitment here can be built upon after this win,” he added.
Vipers AS man-of-the-match: Wayne Sim – Commanding presence at the heart of the AS defence. Bailed the Vipers out on countless occasions.
Line-up: Ewan Lim (gk), Mok Siwei, Parry Lim, Wayne Sim, Lee Cheng Yao, Kevin Chow, Lau Hung Tuan, Mohamad Sarif, Pek Jia Hao, Nur Afif, Eddie Chow.
Substitutes: Lu Fang Yi, Alvin Goh, Jason Wong.