TASHKENT: Thai club BEC Tero have clinched a place in the Asian Champions League final despite losing 1-0 to Pakhtakor of Uzbekistan in the away leg of their semi-final on Tuesday.
However, the Thai champions, who won the first leg 3-1 in Bangkok two weeks ago, still do not know who they will face in the final of the inaugural US$3mil competition.
The second leg of the semi-final between Chinese club Dalian Shide and Al Ain of the United Arab Emirates was postponed until further notice last week due to the SARS virus.
Defeat in Tashkent failed to sour the occasion for surprise package BEC Tero, who held firm until the 86th minute when Pakhtakor striker Server Djeperov plundered the only goal of a tense game.
Chinese title-holders Dalian Shide trail Al Ain 4-2 but the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have not said when the second leg of the semi-final can be played.
China has reported 97 deaths from the flu-like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome. The global death toll stands at 236. Reuters