YANGON (11 Sept 2011) – Thailand might have been a little slow off the block but in the end, they did enough to win their first three points in Group A of the AFF Under-19 Championship when they beat Malaysia 1-0 as Cambodia emerged victorious with a close 5-3 victory over Cambodia in the other game of the day.
The Thais, who had three days of rest since the start of the competition, made sure of the points scoring the only goal of the game here at the Youth Training Centre off striker Pakorn Parmpak in the 37th minute.
“We had some two weeks of preparation before coming here and this is obviously not enough,” said Somchai Choyboochum, the chief coach of Thailand afterwards.
“The team lacked fitness and the players seem to have no energy towards the end. We have to improve on this obviously.”
The Malaysians, who were held scoreless by Laos in their first game of the group two days earlier, put up a better display this time round following the better sunny weather conditions.
But while they were winning the midfield battle for the most part, they just could not get into the box to trouble Thai keeper Watchara Buathong.
It was the Thais who created the better chance in the first half with a Itthiphon Yotphrom’s strike that narrowly missed the upright while some time later, an attempt from Athit Wisetsilpa was parried out by Mohd Farhan Abu Bakar.
In the 37th minute, there was no denying the Thais the lead when off a through pass from Thitiphan Puangjan caught the Malaysian defence napping for Pakorn to gleefully pick it up and slot past the reach of Mohd Farhan.
The Thai went down a gear after the half to allow Malaysia to do most of the attacking where they relied more on counter attack to get in front.
But as hard as the Malaysians tried to get back into the game, they just could not get on the scoresheet as the score remained all the way to the finish.
“We controlled the game but we had no luck even though we had several chances,” said Ismail Ibrahim, the chief coach of Malaysia.
“The Thais took advantage of our one mistake and we paid for it.”
On the other hand at the Aung San Stadium, Phanny Rathas hat trick led Cambodia to a 5-3 victory over the Philippines.
Phanny was on target in the 44th, 56th and 75th minute as Prak Mony Udom (45th minute) and Rous Samouen (52nd) scored the other goals for the Cambodians.
All three goals for the Philippines were scored by captain Fitch Johnson in the 63rd, 89th and 90th minute.
Group A: Thailand, Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, Cambodia
Group B: Myanmar, Indonesia, Laos, Vietnam, Brunei DS
RESULTS and FIXTURES
8 Sept: LAOS 3 INDONESIA 3 / BRUNEI DS 0 VIETNAM 7
9 Sept: PHILIPPINES 1 SINGAPORE 1 / CAMBODIA 0 MALAYSIA 0
10 Sept: VIETNAM 1 MYANMAR 1 / BRUNEI DS 0 LAOS 7
11 SEPT: MALAYSIA 0 THAILAND 1 / CAMBODIA 5 PHILIPPINES 3
12 Sept: Myanmar vs Brunei DS (1530, Youth Training Centre) / Indonesia vs Vietnam (1530, Aung San Stadium)
13 Sept: Thailand vs Cambodia (1530, Youth Training Centre) / Singapore vs Malaysia (1530, Aung San Stadium)
14 Sept: Brunei DS vs Indonesia (1530, Aung San Stadium) / Laos vs Myanmar (1530, Youth Training Centre)
15 Sept: Cambodia vs Singapore (1530, Youth Training Centre) / Philippines vs Thailand (1530, Aung San Stadium)
16 Sept: Vietnam vs Laos (1530, Aung San Stadium) / Indonesia vs Myanmar (1530, Youth Training Centre)
17 Sept: Malaysia vs Philippines (1530, Youth Training Centre) / Singapore vs Thailand (1530, Aung San Stadium)
18 Sept: Rest Day
19 Sept: Winner A vs Runner-up B (1530) / Winner B vs Runner-up A (1810)
20 Sept: Rest Day
21 Sept: 3rd/4th Placing (1530) / Final (1810)