SINGAPORE OUT OF SUZUKI CUP AFTER LOSING 1-3 TO MALAYSIA

BY JONATHAN WONG, Straits Times

Singapore were eliminated from the AFF Suzuki Cup in dramatic fashion when they fell 3-1 to arch-rivals Malaysia on Saturday night.

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Needing only a point to progress from the group, defending champions Singapore conceded a last-minute penalty which Tigers midfielder Safiq Rahim converted in extra time to take the lead.

Substitute Indra Putra scored in stoppage time into an unguarded net following a breakaway as Singapore goalkeeper Hassan Sunny had come up for a corner.

The visitors had taken the lead in the 61st minute through striker Safee Sali which silenced the near-capacity National Stadium. However, the Lions equalised through striker Khairul Amri's neat finish in the 83rd minute.

It was all in vain though for the hosts and national coach Bernd Stange.

With the win, Malaysia, who were third in Group B, leapfrogged Singapore into second spot with four points. More significantly, it meant the Tigers qualified for the semi-finals with a meeting against Group A winners Vietnam.

Thailand, who beat Myanmar 2-0 to top Group A with nine points, will face the Philippines in the other semi-finals.

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