Thailand seemed to have put their campaign for the Asian Games this year in peril when they were held to a disappointing 1-1 draw by lowly Bangladesh in Group B as Vietnam picked up their second win in their Group D encounter after beating Nepal 2-0.
The Thais, who needed a late Chaided Supachai equaliser before they were able to hold Qatar to a 1-1 draw, once again had the frontman to thank for his 80th minute heroics to cancel out Bangladesh’s lead through Mahbubur Rahman’s 52nd minute effort.
The win saw Thailand picking up just two points from two matches and where they will need to beat Uzbekistan in their last match for them to get a shot to the next round.
But with Uzbekistan in fine form where today they blasted Qatar 6-0, Thailand will have to pull out all the stops for a positive result.
On the other hand, it was another stroll for Vietnam in Group D as they beat Nepal 2-0 to follow up on their 3-0 victory over Pakistan earlier.
Nguyen Anh Duc broke the deadlock with a 31st minute strike as Phan Van Duc added the second goal on 63rd minute.
The win has set up a decisive encounter against Japan to decide the group winners in two days.
In the meantime, another ASEAN representative Timor Leste fell to a 4-1 defeat at the hands of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in a Group C tie.
UAE scored three quick goals in succession – Shaheen Aldarmki (2nd minute), Salem Alsharji (10th) and Zayed Alamari (19th) – for them to take a 3-0 lead at the break.
Zayed then added the fourth goal for the UAE and his second of the afternoon in the 61st minute as Timor Leste then pulled a goal back off Rufino Walter Gama in the 87th minute.
The loss for Timor Leste was their second in as many matches after going down 6-0 in their opening game.
Timor Leste will complete their fixtures with the final game in the group against Syria.