YANGON (5 Sept 2017) – A header just after the hour mark from defender Abdul Wadud Ramli gave Brunei their opening 3-2 win over the Philippines in the first game of Group B of the AFF Under-18 Championship here at the Thuwunna Stadium.
“We are of course very happy to pick up our first full points which is really our first international win,” said striker Muhammad Abdul Mateen Said. “Now we have to prepare well for our next game.”
In spite of the threat of rain, both teams took to the game in high spirit as they were on the offensive from the get go.
It was the Philippines who got onto the score sheet first with Mariano Suba punishing the mistake from Brunei defender Mohamad Azirul Asmadi Aji to score past keeper Muhd Amirul Hakim Zulkarnain.
But the lead was just for less than a minute as Abdul Mateen ran in from the right for a fabulous grounder beyond the reach of Philippines keeper Jessie Semblante.
Going into the second half, it was Brunei who pushed ahead where a dangerous run was met with a foul on Muhammad Nur Asyraffahmi Norsamri, who then got up to blast his team into the lead with a well taken penalty.
The Philippines upped the tempo in search of the equaliser and in the 55th minute, they drew level with a fabulous header from captain Fidel Tacardon who nodded home a Robert Wilson corner.
However, Brunei seemed to be a little more determined on the day as Wadud then provided them with the winning header from a Muhammad Nur Asyraffahmi cross in the 65th minute.
The Philippines threw everything they had soon after with the hope of drawing the game to steal at least a point, but it was not to be as the score stood all the way to the finish.
“We made some mistakes and that gifted the game to Brunei,” said Suba. “Now we have to made the corrections in training to make sure that we get better for the next match.”