Singapore Premier League • August 31, 2014
Wasps Leave It Late Against Jaguars
Written by: Phoon Jia Hui
A late penalty conversion from Rodrigo Tosi ensured Brunei DPMM moved five points clear at the top of the Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League standings as they edged Tanjong Pagar United 2-1 at Queenstown Stadium on Saturday evening.
DPMM had gone behind after Kamel Ramdani put Tanjong Pagar in front midway through the first-half but that was cancelled out by Tosi just after the hour mark and it was the Brazilian again as he popped up with the winner at the death.
The Jaguars were arguably the better side in the opening exchanges as they took the game to the visitors, closing down quickly whenever their opponents had possession and attempted to hit on the break.
One such chance nearly saw Tanjong Pagar break the deadlock after Firdaus Idros found himself with only the keeper to beat, but instead flashed one wide on 16 minutes.
Six minutes later, DPMM fashioned their first opportunity of the game when Roy O’Donovan latched onto a lobbed pass but Tanjong Pagar custodian Aurelien Herisson was quick off his line to thwart the former.
That miss proved costly as the home side opened the scoring at the other end immediately after.
Exchanging passes with Sebastien Etiemble on the edge of the box, Ramdani picked his spot and fired a shot which crept into Wardun Yussof’s bottom corner.
The opener spurred DPMM and It could have been 1-1 on the half-hour mark when Tanjong Pagar failed to clear their lines from a freekick. The loose ball fell to Boris Raspudic but the defender contrived to poke it wide from close range.
The Wasps edged closer to a leveller as Rodrigo Tosi rose to meet a corner at the near post but Herisson tipped his header onto the bar and to safety in the 33rd minute.
Raspudic then almost gifted Tanjong Pagar a second five minutes before the break after he nodded Tengku Mushadad’s delivery past Wardun but to the relief of the two, the ball trickled out for a corner.
DPMM coach Steve Kean was forced to replaced an injured O’Donovan with Shahrazen Said at half-time as they sought a way back into the game.
Azwan Ali forced Herisson to saves twice in the space of a minute, as he saw his powerful low shot kept out by the legs of the Tanjong Pagar custodian before his effort was pushed away at the near post.
However, it was a matter of time before DPMM pulled level and they duly did so in the 61st minute as Tosi headed home a corner from the right past a hapless Herisson who was finally beaten.
There were a couple of half-chances thereafter as Adi Said sent a looping header narrowly over on 66 minutes before directing a header straight at Herisson.
DPMM pushed forward in numbers in the closing stages and were nearly rewarded but Zahid Ahmad made an important block from Tosi’s shot inside the area three minutes from time.
There was still time for late drama though, as referee Ahmad A’Qashah pointed to the spot after Hanafi Salleh was adjudged to have fouled Tosi from the back inside the penalty area.
Tosi dusted himself off as he dispatched the spotkick down Herisson’s middle to cruelly deny Tanjong Pagar all three points and also score his 21st of the season, which took him to the top of the goalscoring charts once again.
With the result, DPMM now have 46 points, five more than nearest challengers Warriors FC going into the ‘half-round’ while Tanjong Pagar slipped one spot into tenth after Woodlands Wellington’s 1-1 draw with Harimau Muda on the same day.