Malaysia fight back to draw first leg of Suzuki Cup final
Malaysia fought back from going two goals down to secure a 2-2 draw with Vietnam in the first leg of the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup final yesterday.
Vietnam go into Saturday's return leg in Hanoi's My Dinh National Stadium as favourites, however, thanks to their two away goals.
Both nations are attempting to win the regional title for only the second time.
After weathering a strong start by the hosts, the Vietnamese raced into a two-goal lead by the 25th minute.
Phan Van Duc hit the Malaysians on the break when he latched on to Doan Van Hau's lofted pass before sending in a low centre that eventually ended up at the feet of Nguyen Huy Hung, who slotted his deflected shot beyond goalkeeper Farizal Marlias.
Pham Duc Huy made it 2-0 soon after when his shot from distance gave Farizal little chance.
With the vociferous backing of the majority of the 88,482 fans inside the Bukit Jalil Stadium, Malaysia found a way back into the game nine minutes before the interval when Shahrul Saad charged into the six-yard box to head Syamer Kutty Abba's curling free-kick home.
Malaysia were level on the hour as Safawi Rasid stepped up to curl a free-kick from the edge of the area around the wall and beyond the outstretched arms of Dang Van Lam. - REUTERS