SENSATIONAL: Sime Darby leave it late
SYUKUR Saidin's stoppage time goal gave Premier League side Sime Darby a sensational 2-1 win over defending champions Terengganu in an FA Cup semi-final first leg in Kuala Terengganu yesterday while 10-man Kedah held Kelantan 1-1 in Kota Baru.
Terengganu were caught out on the break two minutes into added time as Sime Darby poured forward in numbers, ending with new Brazilian signing Leandro Teofilo slipping the ball to Syukur to fire past a hapless Sharbinee Allawee Ramli.
It was fitting reward for Sime Darby who upstaged a lacklustre Terengganu as the tone was set after 15 minutes when Patrick Wleh skipped past Sharbinee and rolled the ball towards the unguarded net only to see the recovering defender Faizal Muhammad get back in the nick of time to clear the danger.
But the visitors had to wait until the 53rd minute for a deserved breakthrough when Liberian Wleh outpaced centre-back Muslim Ahmad before rounding Sharbinee for the lead for his sixth FA Cup goal.
Terengganu, however, equalised in the 66th minute through their own Liberian striker Francis Doe, who side-footed from close range after Joseph Kalang Tie cut the ball back from the byline.
In Kota Baru, Kedah gained precious away-goal advantage after a mesmerising goal by Vedran Gerc cancelled Norshahrul Idlan Talaha's early strike for Kelantan in a stop-start game which saw five minutes of added time played in the first half and another nine in the second.
Norshahrul put Kelantan ahead in the 17th minute after firing from Badhri Radzi's reverse through ball despite Kedah goalkeeper Helmi Eliza Elias getting a hand to it but unable to stop the ball from going in.
Helmi denied Norshahrul a second goal four minutes later when he diverted the striker's shot from close range with his right foot at full stretch before Kedah drew level through a piece of brilliant individual display by new signing Gerc on the half-hour mark.
The Croatian received the ball on the halfway line and set off on a run at top speed which took him past three defenders before unleashing an unstoppable shot past Khairul Fahmi Che Mat for his third goal in two matches.