|Posted on August 7, 2022 at 1:40 PM|
Playing their fifth game in the Hilderinc Football Invitational, Hilderinc Twā continued to stress the importance and benefits of their relentless work on the training ground as they overcame Respeto FC in the latest tie in the series.
Aimed at very selectively inviting well-managed clubs and teams which possess their own objectives for self-improvement and growth, to pit against either of the Saturday or Sunday Hilderincs to create a positive football eco-system, took an additional development with the introduction of assistant referees to the equation for the friendly.
Adding to the enhancement, and in keeping with the special occasion of the upcoming National Day celebrations, the Hilderinc were appropriately decked in their away red and white kit for the first time since its official launch in August 2020, thus giving a distinct feel to the afternoon’s proceeding.
Perhaps distracted by the firsts, the Blacks were unusually sluggish off the blocks, looking unconnected in the opening minutes, allowing the opponents more possession than what they normally would allot their guests.
However, exhibiting their, now, admirable trait of keeping composure under stress, the Hilderincs took the game into their care at the 15min mark when they pulled ahead with what is becoming one of the signature play right out of their training handbook.
Winning a corner, the conclusion, thereafter, already confirmed even before a kick was taken, right to the name of the scorer, produced the expected result when Melvin Sim put his header into the back of the net, increasing the conversion percentage of Hilderinc cornerkicks to the high 90s, to validate the hours spend on perfecting the set-piece routine.
There was further joy in the Twā camp when they extended the lead a short moment later, from another well-drilled move, this time the ball traveling from goalkeeper, Jose Kasijo from inside to own penalty box, and was visited by five different players in a typical Hilderinc pass and move football, before Florent Zhu, bravely tucked in Aqil Shah’s cross which fell into his path after Hafiz Khir shot was blocked by the Respeto goalkeeper.
Though the game was firmly in their control and with 10mins left to the break, uncharacteristic defensive lapses, two in the space of 5mins of each other had the Blacks pegged back 2-2 after having a taken a two-goal lead, much to the utter frustration, this after goalkeeper Jose Kasijo had made two outstanding saves, and then to be undeservingly beaten by less impressive attempts.
With choice words and instructions given at the half-time recess, the Hilderincs were a different proposition at the restart, as they imposed themselves at every part of the ground, nullifying the opponent’s intent.
Holding a high-line and pressing in advance positions, the Blacks were in their effective best and their dominated in both possession and attempts count, though Simon Khaw was called on to make an impressive save against the run of play.
And complementing the defensive prowess, the midfield and forward players improved vastly on their link-up play, which was a concern in the first period.
So it was a pleasant turnout when the Hilderincs duly regained the lead with another corner, but this time with a slight variation as Nigel Pek cleaned up Melvin Sim’s chance, which fell nicely to him to thump it in.
The fourth was added by current leading scorer, Aqil Shah, who made it five goals in five appearances, a feat only bettered by Club legend, Cristian Peligros, when he found the back of the net with his own signature finish.
Though the Hilderincs could have added a couple more goals, they will take delight that they are able to find answers to the questions they face on the pitch, and are able to consistently translate training ground hard work into matchday endeavours, but with room available for more improvement, it is all about continued pursuit to be better than what they were yesterday.
Hilderinc Twā 4 : Respeto FC 2
Goals: Melvin Sim 14’, Florent Zhu 27’, Nigel Pek 48’, Aqil Shah, 65’
1. Jose Kasijo
2. Ong Ji Kai
3. Melvin Sim
4. Nigel Pek
6. Daryl Wong
7. Hafiz Khir
8. Lim Yangshan
9. Casimir Simon
10. Sam Lindley
11. Aqil Shah
12. Simon Khaw (GK)
13. Florent Zhu
14. Md Hariz
15. Vinod Kumar
16. Ian Morris
Categories: Match Day