Singapore finally thwarts Azkals
Caught in a dynamic deadlock after a half, the Philippine Azkals watched as their opening match in the AFF Suzuki Cup against Singapore came undone in a span of less than three minutes.
Hariss Harun struck in the 61st minute and Faris Ramli doubled the edge in the 63rd, leading the home squad a 2-1 victory on Wednesday night at National Stadium.
The Azkals actually struck back almost immediately, with Amin Nazari heading in a corner pass from Kevin Ingreso in the 69th, but a resolute Singapore squad held on to its second straight victory for six points atop the Group A table.
The Singaporeans, who hadn’t beaten the Filipinos since 2012, were active in the first half, creating several opportunities that put Azkals goalkeeper Kevin Ray Hansen to work in a goalless first half.
The Azkals were in rhythm in the second half with team captain Stephan Schrock dictating their pace at midfield, before the Lions wore them down.
The Azkals will face Timor Leste on Saturday. —REPORTS FROM MARK GIONGCO AND GLENDALE ROSAL