HIGH-RIDING Kowloon Cricket Club threw down the gauntlet to defending champions Hong Kong Football Club A after chalking up their third straight win in the newly opened season at King's Park yesterday. KCC, boosted by the prized off-season signing of Hong Kong captain Farooq Saeed and Shaheen's Yousuf Mohamed and Kulwant Singh, showed their might with a 4-0 thrashing of First Division newcomers Valley A. 'We are so much stronger than last season,' said Greg McGuire, the KCC captain. 'Richard Hogg, who just came from the UK, would have gone straight into the team if it was last season but now he has to be a reserve. 'Things are going great at the moment and I'm sure we'll give Football Club a good run for the title, but Jaime [Collaco] and Faico [Buijas] need to sharpen up a bit. They are not burying our chances. 'We've beaten some very strong teams so far and now we've got to keep winning. But we must not be complacent because last year our biggest problem was not playing well against the weaker teams.' KCC dominated the match right from the whistle as Valley packed their defence in a vain attempt to keep the scoreline down. They were not successful as the aggressive cricketers surged to a commanding 3-0 half-time lead. Mohamed opened the scoring after the cricketers missed several chances and Jamie Collaco and Paul Bailey added one goal each to give KCC the three-goal advantage at the interval. Bailey completed a personal double shortly after the recess and KCC eased down to win the match 4-0, but goalkeeper Stuart Ryan must also be given credit for pulling off several good saves as Valley mounted fast counter-attacks. Second Division champions Valley are finding it difficult in the top league, but captain John Slater is hopeful their first win is just round the corner. Said Slater: 'KCC are certainly title contenders, but we had several chances against them. We looked good in our fast attacks but their goalie made a couple of good saves.' Football Club A had a rest day, but in other matches at King's Park, Shaheen crushed Pakistan Association A 5-0 and Football Club B edged Khalsa A 2-1.