SEA Games 2023: Filipinas escape Malaysia on Sarina Bolden’s late goal
MANILA, PHILIPPINES–Sarina Bolden scored the winner right before the final whistle as the Filipinas kept destiny in their hands after slipping past Malaysia, 1-0, on Saturday in women’s football competitions of the 32nd Southeast Asian Games in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
With a scoreless draw looming in a frustrating evening at RCAF Old Stadium, Bolden came through off a free kick from Sara Eggesvik to give the Filipinas the maximum three points following a disappointing loss to Myanmar in their opening assignment.
The victory put the Philippines on equal terms with Myanmar at three points apiece going into Tuesday’s key match against defending champion and fellow World Cup qualifier Vietnam.
A win will send the Filipinas to the semis and a chance to improve on their bronze finish during last year’s edition in Vietnam.
But defeat practically sends coach Alen Stajcic’s side to a stunning early exit from the regional meet.
Vietnam is on top of Group A with six points after a 3-1 win over Myanmar earlier in the day.
Chances were plenty for the Filipinas, but were denied multiple times by a Malaysian side that played defensive all throughout the contest.
Malaysia looked like it would eventually come out with a point at the expense of the fancied Filipinas until Sofia Harrison was fouled on the left flank, setting up a free kick that led to Bolden’s 21st international goal.