Suhaimi Nets Dream Double
In a game marked by three local doubles, defender Nor Suhaimi bin Che Lah
's must stand out as the most memorable if only for the rarity. The opening was from a foreigner, though, as Ding Sun-Nee
tried to repeat his scoring feat of the last cup tie with an empathic header from Tom Pence
's outswinging corner. Ultimately he failed to make proper contact and the ball spun not into goal but to a grateful Tellskär, who was so close that he had only to raise a thigh to brush the ball home.
Straight from the restart, beyond's player Wai-Kung was careless enough to hand Pence the ball, and a quick overlap and fortunate shot from Suhaimi made it two goals in the same minute for Grilled. The home fans, roused from their silence at the opener, made their unhappiness heard. Pence was on fire, and led most of the early attacks. beyond was swift to reinforce Ida Srivastava on his flank, but was too late to prevent Yunos from profiting from Pence's tricky dribbling. Yunos was motivated into a gear too high by his goal, and rightly got cautioned for taking down beyond's Swedish defender Johan Knutsson needlessly. He got the last laugh however as he fooled Knutsson comprehensively in the 25th minute for his second goal of the day.
To their credit, beyond kept their play positive, going as far as to earn a free kick in a dangerous spot in the 21st minute. Winger Lian Hiu-Fung's impressive swerver was stopped only by the post. beyond forward Janu Singh resorted to diving, but was caught at it. Uruguayan goalkeeper Jordi Balaguer made a brave stand against Suhaimi when he had bypassed the overextended beyond backline, but it was useless against nifty footwork which one would never expect a defender to possess. Being five goals down unexpectedly stoked beyond's fighting spirit, and they fought Grilled to a standstill for the last fifteen minutes of the first half.
Their resolution seemed to waver during the break as Chiew-Yen capitalised on Knutsson's mistake in advancing too far too fast, beating the rest of his teammates to the loose ball and slotting it into the near corner neatly. After sustaining a scare when Srivastava looked as if he was tripped by Tuan-Mu within the penalty area, Chen completed yet another double from a classic reverse pass from a marauding Ma Dai-Lin
. His volley was slightly mishit but still carried enough strength to stay on course despite Balaguer getting his fingertips to it. That proved to be the last goal of the game as beyond defended stoically for the remainder of the match.