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  • April 26, 2013
  • • 19:30
  • • Jalan Besar Stadium, Singapore
  • Referee: Y. Buhari
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Brilliant Nurhilmi heads Cheetahs to victory

Brilliant Nurhilmi heads Cheetahs to victory

Sam Chow

The midfielder added a pair of headers to Liam Shotton's early goal and helped his side to only their second win of the season

Hougang United notched only their second win of the 2013 Great Eastern-Yeo’s S-League season after beating Harimau Muda 3-1 at Jalan Besar Stadium on Friday evening.
 
The Cheetahs were second-bottom and desperate to improve their standing, and they stamped their authority on the game from the first whistle.
 
And they got their due rewards five minutes into the game when striker Liam Shotton poked home the ball after a previous header was saved by Harimau goalkeeper Hafizul Hakim.
 
Harimau struggled to contain the physical prowess of Thomas Beattie and Mamadou Diallo in midfield, while Shotton won most of the headers in the final third for Hougang.
 
Johana Johari’s side doubled their lead in the 21st minute in style after a pinpoint Fazli Jaffar cross from the left was met by the head of Nurhilmi Jasni, his brilliant glancing header giving Hakim no chance.
 
But just when it seemed the game was out of reach for the Young Tigers, they clawed one back after just three minutes.
 
A long ball from right-back Ashmawi Yakin found Syafwan Syahlan, whose header hit the crossbar. Ridzuan Abdunloh was on hand to head the ball into an empty net though, and it was game on.
 
Harimau emerged from the break with all guns blazing, looking to ride on their momentum after their goal in the first half.
 
And they nearly equalized five minutes after the break when Faizat Ghazli fired a shot just wide of Fadhil Salim’s right-hand post.
 
But Hougang appeared to be robbed of a third goal when Shotton’s 30-yard rocket seemed to have crossed the line after bouncing off the crossbar.
 
They did get their third 15 minutes from time when Nurhilmi directed a header past Hakim from a Lau Meng Meng cross – his second of the night, as the Cheetahs held on for all three points.

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