The goalkeeper can very well determine the success or failure of a team.

That rings true for two-time DST Super League defending champions Indera SC as they are having trouble in between the sticks.

Indera haven’t been in their best form and succumbed to back-to-back defeats for the first time in three seasons after losing to the Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) and Lun Bawang to end the first round.

Md Fakhrul Zulhazmi Yussof, who earned a cap with the national side in a friendly against Singapore in June, and second choice custodian Ak Omar Nur Aqamaddin are out indefinitely.

The former - who was between the sticks when Brunei won the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy in 2012 - missed his fourth game in a row due to personal reasons while Ak Omar is out due to an injury after the game against Lun Bawang last Sunday.

Indera have had to scramble and find a replacement and did so with 20-year-old Candra Budianto.

He made his debut against newly promoted IKLS FC on Monday night but gave way for fourth choice goalie Abdul Hadi Timbang, who also made his first appearance for the team, at half-time.

Indera were fortunate and eventually came back from two goals down to win the match 4-3 at the Berakas Sports Complex to close the gap to five points on leaders MS ABDB.

With only eight matches left in the campaign, Indera are currently on 22 points while MS ABDB are on 27.

Indera head coach Hj Omar Hj Jamil can only hope for the best from his charges for a chance to retain their title once more.

“We know that it is difficult but we can only work our best with what we got,” said Hj Omar in an interview with The Brunei Times yesterday.

“MS ABDB have the momentum now and they are looking strong. They have consistent training while we have seven players from KB and it is harder for full training.

“The rest of the games are important. We cannot afford any draws or losses and can only aim for victory,” continued Hj Omar.

Indera manager Rosdin Hj Abdul Aziz, meanwhile, refuses to admit the title race is over and wants to see the best from his side which he dubbed “fighters”.

“We won’t make any excuses. There is a big hole for us to fill in a short time but we will use what we have at the moment,” said Rosdin.

“Our third and fourth choice goalkeepers are still very young and are inexperienced.

“We just hope to give it all our best until the end of the campaign,” he added.

Both Indera and MS ABDB will see action on Friday, with Indera up against Jerudong FC at the Berakas Sports Complex while the army men will face off against the Royal Brunei Police Force Sports Council (MS PDB) at the Tutong Sports Complex.

Both games kick off at 8.15pm.

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