Indonesia had to survive a late fightback from Myanmar before they were able to win 4-3 in the second semifinal of the AFF HDBank Championship at the Phu Tho Stadium.
It will be Indonesia’s first final since winning their first-ever title back in 2010 – the only time Thailand did not pick up the crown following their absence from the meet that was incidentally held here in Ho Chi Minh City.
It was a keen performance from both teams as Syahidansyah Lubis hit the post for Indonesia while Myanmar’s Wai Zin Oo’s wicked flick almost hit the intended target.
“We know that the game will be close as Myanmar have the quality to trouble us. But I am glad that we won this game considering that several of our players were injured,” said Indonesia head coach Sayan Karmadi.
“The boys gave everything they got in this game and we thoroughly deserved to be in the final.”
It was Indonesia who carved out the first goal of the game in the 17th minute when Muhammad Subhan Faidasa played a short pass for Firman Ardiansyah to slot the ball in between the legs of Myanmar keeper Kyaw Htet Aung.
Three minutes after the restart, Myanmar drew level when Pyae Phyo Maung sets up Naing Ye Kyaw to score as both teams then stepped up a gear in search of the winning goal.
Indonesia then scored two quick goals – in the 28th minute with Andri Kustiawan clever flick and in the 32nd minute when Subhan made good on Firman’s freekick.
Myanmar’s introduction of power-play bore fruit in the 35th minute through Nyein Min Soe as it put the score at 3-2 to Indonesia’s favour.
But all hope of forcing the game into extra time evaporated in the 40th minute when Marvin Wossiry thwarted a power-play move to score. And while Myanmar managed to close the gap to 4-3
When Phyo Maung scored, there was just not enough time for them to find the equaliser.
“We had many chances in the first half and we should have scored,” said a disappointed Myanmar head coach Htay Myint afterwards.
Thailand 2 Vietnam 0
Indonesia 4 Myanmar 3
FIXTURES – 27 Oct 2019
All matches at the Phu Tho Stadium
Third / Fourth Placing (1400): Vietnam vs Myanmar
FINAL (1700): Thailand vs Indonesia