|Unfancied Balestier scored their first win of the year|
Against the run of play with the visitors dominated much of the possession, Balestier took the lead in the 31st minute when Zulkiffli Hassim made no mistake from a cross floated in from the right from Fadhil Noh.
"I am not surprise as I had a feeling that I will score," said Zulkiffli on the solitary goal he scored that gifted the Tigers their first competitive win of this season. "And I am happy that we won this game with this goal."
|"Zul" was on his way out of JBS before sharing his thoughts|
"To win the three points to place at the top of our group is a good result for us." added the 30-year-old.
The Tigers could have double that tally eight minutes later when Miroslav Kristic was fouled in the box by Kitchee's custodian Wang Zhenpeng which left little option for the referee to point to the spot.
|Unlucky Kristic (right) failed to find target|
Balestier's coach Marko Kraljevic attributed hard work that paid off in achieving this result.
"We worked hard and it paid off." said the Croatian tactician after the game that was watched by a crowd of 1,048.
"We did not expect to be at the top," added Coach Kraljevic after being told the result of the Kaya-New Radiant match. "But it will not be easy and be tough to play away against Kaya." as the Tigers are due to face the reigning United Football League (UFL) Cup holders in a week's time in Manila.
|Emir Lotinac (top center) is doubtful for next game|
"They (Kitchee) missed Jordi (Spanish striker Jorge Tarres Paramo) but we also missing a few of our own and that's why we tried to defend well, attacked them on counters with Kitchee's defence looked shaky."
"With this win tonight, we hope to build on it for our season." concluded the former midfielder.
|Kitchee's Rufino Del Burgo (17) missed "Jordi" upfront|
"I am still confident that we can make it to the next round of the tournament," said the man who serves as the club's director of football who took over the hot seat after the recent departure of former head coach Abraham Garcia merely days ago.
"We created but couldn't score those chances in the game and Balestier's defending made our game difficult.
"I believe factors like humidity and recent number of games we played had made our players tired but we will keep on fighting to do well in both AFC Cup and Hong Kong League."