Season 13 kicked off with Sharks being held 2-2 by FC Venom, formerly known as Happy United at Broadrick Secondary School on Sunday. Jiayong put his team in front with a fortuitous effort after just four minutes into the new season but FC Venom came back strongly for the 2nd half with two quick goals to take the lead. Howevever the spoils were shared when Murugesan leveled the game with a thumping free-kick midway in the half. Both teams had opportunities to take all 3 points but both were left floundering in front of goal.
Sharks started the game strongly by keeping the game compact and denying space and time for the opposition. With the length of the field leaving much to be desired, shots were raining fast and quick and it was in one of those effort when Jiayong found his shot flying into goal to give his team an early lead. The opposition somehow were not having the best of half as their attacks and forays on the other hand were easily cut off, thanks to some astute defending from the quartet of Vincent, Yi Quan, Jaleel and Zhuoneng. Sharks on the other hand were carving out opportunities at the other hand. What was missing was the finishing touches to some wonderful crosses provided by Brendan and Harold as Sho and Murugesan were unable to dictate the team's pattern of play. Nonetheless, the duo were a constant threat whenever they were in possesion.
As the half wore on, it was a battle in the middle of the park as the opposition were dictating play and were unlucky not to have level the game on two occasion after some poor defending. Michael in goal had only one save to make in the first half as the Sharks trooped off the field with a solitary advantage.
The second half kicked off with FC Venom showing their early intentions with some dangerous play from the flanks. With Sharks struggling to maintain their tempo from the first half, FC Venom strucked early to level the score when an innocuous ball floated off a freekick missed everyone due to poor communication to allow the opposition to sneak the ball. Shortly afterwards, buoyed by the goal, FC Venom went on the offensive and got their just reward. This time round, Michael completely missed the ball off a corner to allow the opposition to yet again sneak in for their second goal. The goal seemed to dent Sharks morale as they were on the backfoot for long periods of the game.
Sharks however managed to get a break-thru in the 61st minute when Sho was fouled just outside the box. Up step Murugesan who was having a quiet game by his standard as his thumping drive deflected off the wall and found the back of the net. 2-2 as both teams craved out chances after chances though FC Venom created more opportunities at the other end and we unlucky not to take taken the lead yet again. Sharks came closest when Harold's fierce drive off a corner missed everyone in the box where a single touch from anyone would have allowed the ball to end up anywhere behind the net as both teams settled for a point each for the season opener.
The Sharks manager commented, 'It was a bad goal to give away but on the other hand, the team didn't play particularly well especially in attack. However, a point in the opening game is not a disaster.