INDERA WIN AFTER TWO LATE GOALS

Indera SC’s Ak Md Azrul Ariffin Pg Hj Metussin (R) dribbles the ball as Jerudong FC’s Yansen Efendi (L) looks on during their DST Super League game at the Berakas Sports Complex last night. BT/Zaim Kasmat

Indera Sports Club came from two goals down to beat Jerudong FC 4-3 in the DST Super League at the Berakas Sports Complex last night.

The victory means that the defending champions remain five points adrift of leaders Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB), who cemented their position at the top of the table after defeating Royal Brunei Police Forces Sports Council (MS PDB) 4-0 in the night’s other game at the Tutong Sports Complex.

Indera started off strongly with Ak Mohd Haikal Pg Zaidi curling a shot wide in the second minute.

Jerudong were no pushovers, responding in the 12th minute when midfielder Mohd Mardi Mirza Abdullah Bujang struck the post from 20 metres out.

Left-back Muiz Sisa and winger Ak Mohd Azrul Ariffin Pg Metussin linked up very well for Indera and posed threats from the left flank.

Meanwhile, Indera’s playmaker Mohd Nurikhwan Othman was playing behind striker Mohd Hamizan Aziz Sulaiman in attack.

Jerudong could not find way past Indera's defence led by centre-back Afi Aminuddin early in the first half, and they resorted to shooting from distance to try their luck against Indera’s fourth choice goalkeeper Abdul Hadi Timbang.

Mohd Hamizan skipped past four Jerudong players before unleashing a shot from the right, but Jerudong goalkeeper Mohd Sophian Mat Said calmly collected the ball.

Mohd Hamizan would not squander the chance a minute later when he headed home Muiz’s cross from the left to put Indera ahead.

In a bizarre turn of events, Jerudong leveled 1-1 in the 45th minute through Mohd Mardi Mirza.

Indera’s goalkeeper Abdul Hadi failed to properly control Mohd Mardi Mirza’s fair play pass from 20 metres out, and the ball went through Abdul Hadi legs and into the net.

Indera came out determined to regain the lead in the second half but they were shocked by Jerudong in the 49th minute.

Rienel Ruani made a brilliant run behind Indera’s defence following a swift counter attack, and the winger calmly slot the ball past Indera’s goalkeeper.

Indera were 3-1 down just four minutes later and their goalkeeper was once again to blame when he failed to tip away Hardi Bujang’s weak shot from outside the penalty box.

Indera brought in strikers Sam Frank and Mohd Zulkhairy Razali as they were desperate to get back into the game.

Frank made an immediate impact for Indera by pulling one goal back in the 73rd minute when scoring from inside the penalty box.

Indera were a different team with inclusion of Frank, and they attacked relentlessly with the tall striker being their target man.

With Frank making his presence felt upfront, Mohd Hamizan Aziz and Mohd Nurikhwan were allowed to make their runs from both flanks.

Mohd Nurikhwan scored the equaliser in the 82nd minute by blasting the ball into the net following a scramble in front of the goal post.

Indera refused to settle for a point and they would score the winner just four minutes later through Frank.

Muiz Sisa set Mohd Hamizan Aziz into the penalty box and the latter unselfishly set Frank up at the far corner for a tap-in.

It was another hard fought victory for Indera following their 4-3 comeback victory on IKLS on Monday, but the club’s head coach Hj Omar Hj Jamil was pleased with the team’s performance.

“We were fantastic throughout the game… Jerudong are a very good team but all the goals that we conceded were soft goals,” the coach told The Brunei Times.

“Our goalkeeper Abdul Hadi is actually very good, he just needs more game time and we need to believe in him.

“Mohd Nurikhwan controlled the game very well in midfield tonight and Sam was just fantastic.

“We made a tactical change after Jerudong scored the third goal… We put Sam and Mohd Zulkhairy in to strengthen the attack and the strategy paid off,” he added.