By FOX Sports staff
Just last season, Buriram created waves in Asian football's premier club competition by winning their opening two games in Group H against Kashiwa Reysol and Guanzhou Evergrande, only to finish bottom of the pile after losing their remaining four matches.
Although they ultimately missed out on qualification for the knockout stages, Thunder Castle's impressive displays was further proof that Thailand's best are starting to be capable of matching their more-illustrious counterparts.
Nonetheless, if they are to get the chance of repeating the feat this year, they will need to see off the challenge of Brisbane after failing to qualify automatically for the group stage.
The tie was initially arranged to take place at the Suncorp Stadium, an agreement between both sides over a change in the date of the fixture has handed home advantage to Buriram, but they might have to do without talismanic captain Suchao Nuchnum, who could join injured winger Jakkaphan Kaewprom on the sidelines.
"Our squad is still not 100% fit with captain Suchao Nuchnum and Jakkaphan out injured," coach Attaphol Buspakom said on the AFC's official website.
"We still have to access Suchao's fitness before the game as we cannot risk any further injuries because he is an important player for us, and we will need him for the other competitions throughout the season.
Buriram's opponents are not without injury problems their own and it was confirmed on Tuesday's pre-match press conference that captain Matt Smith had not travelled with the Roar side, who - like their Thai counterparts - are looking to make the group stage for the second year in a row.
"Regarding the injuries, Matt Smith is back at home recovering [from a hip injury] and we have brought 20 players over to Thailand," revealed Brisbane coach Mike Mulvey.
Mulvey, who replaced Rado Vidosic at the helm of the club just two months ago, is also aware of the threat the Thunder Castle will pose.
"We sent someone to scout Buriram during their pre-season and are very impressed by their achievements over the past couple of years," he added.
"Therefore, we will not take anything for granted and we realise that it will be a difficult game for us."
Even if both Jakkaphan and Suchao miss out on Wednesday, Attaphol will still be confident he has enough quality in his side to trouble Brisbane.
In particular, Theerathon Bunmathan has emerged as Southeast Asia's best left-back over the past 12 months and will cause real problems down the wing, while 32-year-old striker Suriya Domtaisong has the necessary skill and experience a Roar backline that will be without inspirational leader Smith.