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Southeast Asian Games

SEA Games: Philippines 1 Malaysia 0, Shrock condems Young Tigers to first defeat

1:24 am AEDT 30/11/19
Nik Akif Syahiran, Philippines v Malaysia, SEA Games 2019, 29 Nov 2019
Malaysia's hopes of reaching the knockout stage of the football event at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games took a big knock after losing to the host.

A draw against Myanmar in the opening match that was followed by this defeat to Philippines in the second match and that initial idea of looking at Group A as an easy group for Ong Kim Swee and his Malaysia Under-23 side to go through to semi-final stage is now looking further and further away.

Fourth in group now behind Myanmar, Cambodia and Philippines; it would be a tall order for Malaysia to reach the last four of the competition they finished second in, just two years ago.

While the match against Timor Leste could be seen as a sure win, the same cannot be said of the match against Cambodia, so there's no assurance that Malaysia could even pick up the wins they need.

For this match, Kim Swee dropped his two 17-year-olds to the bench with Nik Akif Syahiran and R. Dinesh coming for Luqman Hakim and Umar Hakeem respectively but Malaysia struggled to find any fluency in their game.

Chances were and far in between with Hadi Fayyadh squandering a good chance after a mix up between defender Amani Aguinaldo and Anthony Pinthus. 

While Philippines were orchestrating their play nominally through the very experienced Stephan Shrock trying to find the big strike in Chima Uzoka.

The German-Filipino Shrock would turn out to be the decisive player on the pitch. Just minutes from when he should have been sent off for a high foot challenge on Hadi, he scored the winning goal.

Reminiscent of what happened in the final two years ago against Thailand, Haziq Nadzli once again fail to read a corner kick and Shrock's set piece flew straight into the back of the net to give the home side the winning goal.

In truth, Haziq was comfortable throughout the match with the Malaysian defence fending off Philippines attacks with ease but the game at this elite falls on fine margins and this was the perfect example.

After the recent high of the senior side, Malaysian football were well and truly brought back down to earth with this defeat.


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