Nehru Cup: Maldives beat Syria in dramatic fashionAugust 28th, 2012 - 12:26 am ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Aug 27 (IANS) Amid treacherous underfoot conditions, Maldives grabbed a dramatic 2-1 win over Syria, knocking them out of the Nehru Cup football tournament here Monday.
Syria’s bad luck with the rain continued. In the three matches they have played so far, they are yet to see dry conditions and have just one point.
Maldives kept their hopes alive with this victory. Having played three matches, they were joint toppers with India, who have played one game less, on six points.
The highly rated Ali Ashfaq found the net for the first time in the match, heading in a Mohamed Umair’s free-kick in the 59th minute.
Syria found the equaliser from Alaa Alshbbli in the 81st minute with a sensational overhead kick, his third goal of the tournament.
At a time when the match was headed towards a draw, Ahmed Rasheed scored the winner deep into injury time, tapping in Ashfaq’s low cross to shatter Syria’s hopes.
Both teams relied on aerial balls as heavy ground conditions made the passing game difficult.
Syria adjusted to the conditions quicker with the Maldivian players struggling to build up play.
Syria were quick on the attack. Almedani’s corner-kick was met by Yasser Shoshara’s header but was cleared on the goal-line by Abdulla Asadhulla.
The Maldives, though, soon settled down and started threatening the Syrian goal.
Abdulla had a golden chance to give his side the lead but failed to find the back of the net with Syrian custodian Mosab Balhous making a fine save.
The Syrian captain was again called into action minutes later, flinging his left leg in the way of a venomous Abdulla shot.
The first half ended in a stalemate with neither teams able to break the dreadlock.
The first chance of the second half fell to Syria. Mardek Mardikian, who came on as a substitute in the 46th minute made instant impact bringing out a fine save from Maldives’ goalkeeper Mohamed Imran.
Imran once again came to the rescue of his team, putting his body on the line from Mardikian’s narrow shot.
The Maldives adopted defensive tactics after the changeover, coming under heavy pressure.
With just 10 minutes to go the game took a turn for the better. The match opened up, with both teams trying to find the winner and it finally came in injury time for the Maldives.
Maldives coach Istvan Urbanyi was sent off for dissent despite his team’s late winner.
- Nehru Cup: Ashfaq stars in Maldives win over Syria (Lead) - Aug 28, 2012
- Nehru Cup: Syria beat Nepal for first win - Aug 30, 2012
- India will be tough opposition: Maldives coach - Aug 24, 2012
- Nehru Cup: India scrape through 2-1 against Syria - Aug 22, 2012
- Nehru Cup: Syria come back twice against Cameroon (Lead) - Aug 25, 2012
- Nehru Cup: Maldives impress against Nepal - Aug 23, 2012
- Nehru Cup: Syria hold Cameroon to a 2-2 draw - Aug 24, 2012
- Nehru Cup: India look to continue winning ways against Maldives - Aug 24, 2012
- Nehru Cup: Cameroon beat Maldives; face India in final - Aug 29, 2012
- India take on Syria in Nehru Cup opener - Aug 06, 2012
- SAFF Cup: Maldives, Nepal move into semi-final - Dec 06, 2011
- SAFF Cup: Spirited Nepal held 1-1 by Maldives - Dec 02, 2011
- Nehru Cup: India dismantle Maldives, go top of the table - Aug 25, 2012
- Nehru Cup: India one win away from a third final (Preview) - Aug 27, 2012
- India stun Syria to retain Nehru Cup(Round-up) - Sep 01, 2009
Tags: 59th minute, abdulla, action minutes, ashfaq, back of the net, corner kick, dramatic fashion, dreadlock, equaliser, first chance, goal line, golden chance, imran, injury time, instant impact, nehru cup football, nehru cup football tournament, overhead kick, passing game, umair