Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Borneo Fans Cheer Their Team despite Stadium Ban
Borneo FC, formerly known as Pusamania, have been forced to play a number of games behind closed doors after incidents at their Segiri Stadium. Unlike other clubs who have had similar decisions overturned, no names mentioned, Borneo it seems are stuck with the decision.
The first home game to be effected was their East Kalimantan derby with Persiba. Ordinarily Borneo could expect a decent attendance for the game against their rivals but were forced to bite the bullet and play the game elsewhere.
The game was finally played in Bontang at the Mulawarman Stadium, a three hour plus drive north of Samarinda with visitors Persiba facing a near six hour journey time of their own.
While the game was played behind closed doors that did not stop a number of Borneo fans following their team north and cheering on their heroes from outside the stadium. Borneo won the game 1-0 with a goal by New Zealand international Shane Smeltz, his fifth of the campaign, and after the ref had blown the final whistle the players made a point of saluting the fans who were outside the ground but could see the action through a fence.
A long trek for the Pusamania rewarded with three points and appreciation from their team. The result keeps Borneo midtable and their next game sees them travel to the south of the island to take on Barito Putera.
In an aside this was the first time the Mulawarman Stadium has hosted a top flight game since local side Bontang FC, formerly known as PKT Bontang, were held to a 3-3 draw by PSIR Rembang in the old Liga Primer Indonesia. The club was kicked out of football soon after over some irregularities and this last season has seen them compete n Liga 3; a far cry from the days when they competed in Asian Club competition.