PETALING JAYA: Selangor and defending champions Kedah scored convincing victories in their Malaysia Cup semi-final first-leg matches last night.
Kedah, who are gunning for their second straight treble, cruised to a 3-0 win over Terengganu at the Darulaman Stadium in Alor Star while Selangor chalked up a 2-0 win over Johor FC at the Shah Alam Stadium.
Kedah led 2-0 at half-time, courtesy of goals by Badrol Bakhtiar in the 29th minute and Marlon James in the 40th minute.
Mohd Khyril Muhymeen then added the third goal in the 75th minute.
Kedah, who have retained the Super League and the FA Cup titles, will be playing the Turtles in the return-leg match at the Sultan Mizan Stadium in Gong Badak on Sunday.
In the other semi-final, Selangor scored a goal in each half through national striker Mohd Safee Sali in the 18th minute and R. Surendran in the 90th minute to silence Johor FC
But the Red Giants will have to tread with caution against the unpredictable club side when they travel for the return-leg match at the JCorp Stadium in Pasir Gudang on Saturday.
As for Kedah, they look to be home and dry and are as good as in the final.
Last night, the Canaries found it tough to breach the visitor’s defence, marshalled by former international Marzuki Yusof, and only managed to find a breakthrough at the half-hour mark when Badrol sent the 35,000-odd fans into a frenzy when he beat Terengganu custodian Sharbinee Allawee for the opening goal.
Golden boot winner Marlon doubled the tally when he shook off his marker before sending in a dipping shot past Sharbinee in the 40th minute.
Marlon had a couple more sitters after the breather but failed to hit target. In the 72nd minute, the St Vincent and Grenadines striker earned a penalty after Sharbinee brought him down inside the box.
However, to everyone’s surprise the ever-reliable Chilean midfielder Nelson Martin ballooned the spot kick.
Three minutes later, Marlon’s attempt hit the woodwork and the lurking Khyril pounced on the rebound to slot home the third goal.