Tuesday, 19 August 2014 | MYT 11:23 PM
Pahang edge closer to Malaysia Cup quarters
Felda United’s Shahrulnizam Mustapa (right) vying for the ball with JDT II’s Mohd Alif Mohd Yusof during their Malaysia Cup Group A match at the Selayang Stadium. — M. AZHAR ARIF / The Star
PETALING JAYA: Defending champions Pahang edged a step closer to the Malaysia Cup quarter-finals after a 2-1 win over Lions XII at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.
It was Pahang’s second straight win in Group A. Nigerian Dickson Nwakaeme opened account for the Elephants in the 13th minute. Substitute Fauzi Rozlan increased the lead with a long-range strike two minutes from time.
Lions XII scored a controversial stoppage time goal through Faris Ramli.
The Elephants, who whipped Johor Darul Ta’zim II 4-0 in their opening match last week, were the dominant side. Nwakaeme capitalised on Lions XII’s defensive error to score past goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud from close range.
Spurred on by the early goal, Pahang continued to surge forward but failed to make the chances count.
Mohd Faizol Hussein had the best chance to increase Pahang’s lead but the midfielder ballooned the ball from point blank range in the 41st minute.
Lions XII came alive towards the closing stages of the first half, but Safuwan Baharuddin’s shot was saved by Pahang goalkeeper Mohd Khairul Azhan and Hafiz Sujad’s shot was denied by the woodwork.
Pahang continued to live dangerously in the second half. Fauzi then eased Pahang’s nerves with a goal in the 88th minute. Lions XII then managed reduce the deficit through Faris but it was too little too late for the Singapore side.
In Group C, Kelantan registered their first win by whipping Penang 3-1 at the Sultan Mohd IV Stadium in Kota Baru.
Super League champions Johor Darul Ta’zim, the group leaders, were surprisingly held to a 0-0 draw by winless Armed Forces at the Larkin Stadium.