ALOR STAR: Kedah fell one note short in their game and had to settle for a goalless draw against Sarawak in a Premier I match at the Darulaman Stadium here last night.
Despite having an understrength side because of the absence of four players, who are on national duty, and the suspension of defenders Andrew Clarke and Mohd Fauzie Nan, the Canaries could have trooped off with full points.
But to their dismay, a goal remained elusive with the tightly marked James Monie and Azli Ahmad failing to make their attempts count.
In the absence of the key players, Kedah coach Jorgen Larsen had to field midfielders Liew Kit Kong and Manzoor Azwira in defence.
Employing the strategy of attack being the best form of defence, Kedah put the Sarawak backline under tremendous pressure and Monie forced goalkeeper Mohd Firdaus to make a diving save of his well-placed header in 11th minute.
Sarawak coach Jalil Ramli had to bring in former national player Gilbert Cassidy to replace Hussen Abdul Razak in the 20th minute in a bid to regain control of midfield.
But Kedah had the best chance to go into the break with the lead. Amirul Mahadzir hit the ball across the face of the goal but Azli was a fraction slow to connect it.
Sarawak managed to call the shots in the second half but Kedah did well to shut out all the raids and also to strike on the counter-attack.