|Cam v CTaipei, Back Row, LtoR: Udom, Sovan, Piseth, Visal, Laboravy, Yaty. Front: Vathanaka, Srin, Pheng, Virak, Sokumpheak (capt) - click to enlarge|
The second half wasn't any better until just after the hour. Hong Pheng, getting his first start for the NT, sent over a cross which Khuon Laboravy volleyed wide of the upright with his shin. Moments later the home side sent an overhead kick against the cross-bar before a flurry of substitutions took the heat out of the game just as it was warming up. With Chhin Chhoeun on for his pace, he got behind the home defence but lost his bearings and allowed the keeper to get in a tackle when a simple dink would've put his side ahead. Yaty had to drop on a late low drive but the game appeared to be heading for a nondescript ending with no goals when Chinese Taipei switched off, allowed Chhoeun to whip over a cross and Vathanaka was lurking at the far post to volley the ball home. Cue delirious celebrations. The stopwatch had just ticked past 90 minutes. Exactly four minutes later, a breakaway presented Vathanaka with a sight of goal and his aim was true for his second and confirmation of a very rare away victory for Cambodia. There were yellow cards a plenty, including Crown's Ngoy Srin and Pheng, but they won't mind one iota. No-one will call the game a classic, both teams found it impossible to string passes together or attack in a coherent fashion, but keeping going until the final whistle is a football basic and that's what Cambodia did in spades this evening. Full credit to them for doing just that.
Cambodia NT: Yaty, Pheng, Visal, Sovan, Piseth (Sovannrithy 74), Srin (Sothearath 73), Sokumpheak, Udom (Chanrasmey 58), Virak (Samoeun 43), Laboravy (Chhoeun 73), Vathanaka. Subs not used: Sophea, Sothy, Daravorn, Soksana, Bookings: Srin, Sovan, Piseth, Pheng. Goals: Vathanaka (91, 94).