The Indian junior team, who are in Malaysia to prepare for the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) U-16 Championship that will be held in Malaysia in September, played two friendlies against the Malaysian U-16 side who are also set to be part of the championship.
First half goals by Rohit Danu (21' penalty) and Givson Singh Moirangthem (31') for India was only followed by Malaysia pulling one back during injury time (90+4') of the second half.
India coach Bibiano Fernandes made two changes to the first 11. Niraj Kumar replaced Lalbiakhlua Jongte in between the sticks, and the introduction of Manish Chaudhary in the stead of Gurkirat Singh was the other change.
Starting ahead of Bhuvnesh Shrindre gainst Malaysia in both the friendlies, unlike the previous couple of games against Bangkok Glass FC (2-2) and Thailand U-16 (2-1 loss), Rohit Danu looked hungry for goals as he missed the target early on.
On the other end, Niraj Kumar was called into action in the 14th minute and the Indian custodian did well to sweep off the ball from the rival attacker's feet.
It was none other than Danu to open the scoring when he converted from the 12 yards mark to give India the lead in the 21st minute, six minutes before he was denied by the Malaysian custodian from a shot in open play.
Niraj appeared alert in goal meanwhile, effecting another save at the half-hour mark, which was followed by the Indians doubling their lead through Givson's strike in the very next minute that was an end product of a well-worked move.
The Young Tigers dominated most of the play thereon but Malaysia were not giving up yet and almost went on to convert an opportunity in the 38th minute with the ball missing the target.
Unfortunate for Danu, he could have found his name on the scoresheet once again before half-time but for the upright to prevent his shot from going in. India hence went into the break with a two-goal lead.
Before being replaced by Harpreet Singh, Danu continued to be in the thick of the second half action as India kept the pressure on the home side. The Malaysia goalkeeper intercepted on a few occasions to prevent further damage.
However, India were not going to clean sheet since the 2-0 win over Buriram United U-17 on July 13 with Malaysia reducing their margin of defeat in injury time as the trend of conceding late goals continues to worry Bibiano Fernandes.
India U-16's starting lineup: Niraj Kumar (GK), Manish Chaudhary, Harpreet Singh, Moirangthem Thoiba Singh, Shabas Ahammed Moothedath, Bekey Oram, Ricky John Shabong, Ridge Melvin DeMello, Givson Singh Moirangthem, Vikram Pratap Singh (C), Rohit Danu.