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Vietnam and Australia shine, Singapore salvage draw

Ho Chi Minh City: Vietnam and Australia enjoyed winning starts to their 2019 AFF U-18 Championship Group B campaign, while Singapore drew with Thailand on Wednesday. 

Thailand 1-1 Singapore

Substitute Danish Qayyum Putra Shahrin Azhar gave Singapore a valuable point in their opening game when they held Thailand to a 1-1 draw.

The action was end to end with both teams eager to follow up with the blistering start to the Championship as demonstrated by teams from Group A on Tuesday, where a total of 21 goals were scored in the three matches played.

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Achitpol Keereerom could have given Thailand the early lead but shot wide in front of an open goal, before his glancing header just missed the target.

Singapore’s Abdul Rasaq had a fabulous free-kick that forced Thailand 'keeper Soponwit Rakyart into an outstretched save as both teams had to settle for a scoreless deadlock in the first half.

However just five minutes after the restart, Thailand grabbed the lead when Achitpol made good on a rebound after an earlier attempt from Pharadon Phattaphon was blocked by Singapore custodian Oliver Sim.

Singapore pushed up a notch in search of the equaliser as the Thais then went on counter-attack mode.

And six minutes from the end, Singapore finally got the goal they were looking for when Qayyum unleashed a delightful shot from some 20 metres to beat Thai 'keeper Sopornwit.

Thailand will face Cambodia on Friday, while Singapore take on Malaysia.

Cambodia 1-5 Australia

Just five minutes into the game and the Australians were already two up off goals from Kai Clifton Trewin in the third minute and then Dylan Enrique Diaz two minutes later.

Harry McCarthy added the third goal in the 19th minute for Australia to take a 3-0 lead at the break.

Substitute Lleyton Andrew Brooks scored the fourth goal in the 65th minute before Cambodia pulled a goal back in the 74th minute through captain Sieng Chanthea.

Brooks then finished things off with Australia’s fifth goal of the game right at the end.

Vietnam 1-0 Malaysia

In front of several thousand screaming fans, Vietnam were on the offensive from the get go as they pinned defending champions Malaysia back for much of the first half.

Tran Manh Quynh was the first to test Malaysian keeper Firdaus Iman Mohd Fadhil with the first forcing the latter into an outstretched save while not too long afterwards, his effort rolled slowly off the upright.

With the score tied at the end of the first half, the Malaysians finally woke up into the second half as the introduction of Muhammad Azam Azmi Murad gave them more pace.

As they strung passes together, their inability to get a good final touch would haunt them as several chances could have seen better finishing.

But just when the game seemed to be heading for a draw, a well-taken free-kick two minutes from the end from Minh Trong was deflected into the Malaysian goal by Muhammad Umar Hakeem rezwan.

Sources: ASEAN Football Federation, Vietnam Football Federation

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