|Posted on September 21, 2010 at 8:54 PM|
Harvester FC 2010 Review
By Azam Azmi
2010 welcomed the additions of several new players, namely Dominic and Jit as well as ex CBC players, Alex and Daniel. The core of the squad remained unchanged, only long term absentees Thomas and Andrew still yet to recover from their injuries. Coming back from long term injuries were Keith and Cyrill.
The results of the pre-season friendlies were encouraging. 6 wins out of 7 games played against fairly strong opponents showed some promise. Majority of the goals scored were from through balls played through the middle.
The only blip was that the team could only keep one clean sheet out of these 7 games. Another downside was the size of the squad. It would be considered a miracle if we had 3 subs in these friendly games. Too often we had only just enough players; a very dire precedent for the AGAPE season.
AGAPE Cup Group Phase
With the exception of Hiding Place, COA2 & CMC, the rest of the opponents were fairly unknown to us. Still the objective was to win the group, with Hiding Place expected to challenge us for the top spot.
The first game started well, with us beating FGA 6 – 0, a rather rude introduction to AGAPE for the newcomers. The win came at a cost however, with defensive lynchpin Azman out of the season after breaking his ankle.
A bad day at the office against COA2 saw us drop 2 crucial points, as the determined youngsters etched out a draw with a gritty display. Woon, having a nightmare game at leftback.
The next game against AMC2 saw us struggling for form. Defensive frailties were evident as we conceded a needless penalty which they scored from. Sasi and Keith pulling out rabbits from their hats to scrape 3 points from this game.
A deserved 3 – 1 win against PMC was next. A masterclass performance from Cyrill adding the gloss to Jerome’s two expertly taken goals.
The clash against HP was going to decide who would potentially win the group. Cyrill had a golden opportunity to give us the lead but saw his penalty go wide. This was a tough game with HP eventually coming out on top after yet another defensive mistake.
Surrendering top spot, the next game against SAL was always going to be a crucial one. Kannu opening his AGAPE account with a fortuitous looping header. Kenny had a blinder of game, his double save (one on his ass) deserving special mention. Sashi wrapping up the 3 points game with a nicely taken double.
Hat-tricks from Cyrill and Alex, as well as a double from Thomas saw us posting a record win over CBCV. The 8 goals looking good on the Goals Scored column. Kenny also finally keeping a clean sheet after the first game against FGA. With other results going for us, we automatically clinched the runner’s up spot in the group and qualified for the knock out phase.
A Ronald thunderbolt and yet another fortuitous Kannu goal clinched the 3 points against CMC. The game was marred with a booking to Leslie, automatically suspending him for the next knock out game as well as the red card to Kavin. The red card was deemed as violent play by the referee and as a result of this, Kavin was expelled from the tournament.
AGAPE Cup Knock Out Phase
A 7 week layoff from the CMC game did not help, as we struggled against BBTC, individual errors marring our game. We did well to claw ourselves from 2 – 0 down to draw the game with 15 minutes to go to push the game into extra time.
Yet another of our defensive error was capitalized, for BBTC to go ahead. This time however, we could not find that equalizer and our season had come to an end.