BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE first match of Group B of the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy saw Singapore with a convincing 5-1 win against Lao PDR at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium.
Singapore’s opening goal came in the 18th minute at Rusyaidi Salime’s second attempt after Lao PDR goalkeeper fumbled the ball over. The lead lasted only for 2 minutes after Lao PDR’s captain, Phithack Kongmathilath, was left unmarked and slotted home the equalizer.
Singapore took back the lead in the 40th minute with a powerful half volley by Hami Said after Lao PDR failed to clear a corner kick. Lao PDR found themselves trailing again just before halftime. This time by Ikhsan Fandi Ahmad, who scored on the rebound, after his initial header was palmed back to him by Lao PDR’s goalkeeper. At halftime the score was 3-1 to Singapore.
The second half started just like the first where Ikhsan Fandi Ahmad scored his second of the game in the 49th minute with a towering header to make it 4-1. Lao PDR’s best opportunity came in 85th minute but was saved by Singapore’s goalkeeper, Zharfan Rohaizad.
Singapore finally made it 5-1 deep into injury time, making it the final score, when a high ball from defence found Rusyaidi Salime who then perfectly placed the ball into the net. After the big win Ahmad Fandi’s Singapore is now favourites to go thru the semis of the tournament.
The next game of Group B will be Cambodia against Lao PDR on the 28th April at Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium.