OKS targets another surprise against Saudi Arabia

Ong Kim Swee was elated after Malaysia U23 gained their first point in the tournament but yearns to achieve more against the Saudis.

The scripted started out the same as did against Iraq but thankfully, it didn't end in the same manner. Just like in the first game, Malaysia conceded a soft early goal but this time around, the was more fight in the team and they eventually found their way back into the match.

Ward Al Barri opened the scoring for Jordan in the 16th minute before Safawi Rasid made no mistake with his spot kick in the 39th minute for both teams to share the spoils in the second encounter of Group C of the AFC U23 Championship.

Malaysia defended much against Jordan with Dominic Tan and Irfan Zakaria in particular brushing off their poor performance from the earlier match with a commanding display throughout the 90 minutes. 

"The boys showed good character today. Before the game, nobody gave us any hope but we almost took all three points from Jordan. Today we competed with Jordan in every area and we believe in ourselves. It was unfortunate that we couldn't convert the two chances. Overall I'm proud of the boys and they are capable of playing at this level."

"Of course the late penalty helped us a lot. It gave us a lot more confidence and we started believing that we could get more out of the game. 

"I hope we can continue to surprise against Saudi. I believe that if we start to do the same things against Saudi, we should have a good chance to qualify for the next stage," said an elated Ong in the post-match press conference.

Saudi Arabia take on Iraq in the other group match later today and the Malaysian camp will be hoping that Iraq continue their winning run to set up a pulsating final day in the group on Tuesday.

Iraq currently lead the group with three points, followed by Jordan on two points with Saudi Arabia and Malaysia having a point each.