Football

Tajikistan stuns Syria

Boosts its chances of reaching the final

Tajikistan brightened its title-round chances, shocking fancied Syria by two second half goals, in the Intercontinental Cup at the EKA Arena here on Wednesday.

Striker Komron Tursunov found the lead before Ilhomjon Barotov netted the second to help Tajikistan reach six points after two matches.

The Tajiks, who had surprised host India in the opener, just need a draw against DPR Korea to reach the final.

Syria created a few chances in the first half but was unlucky not to find the net as three of its attempts came off the framework.

Tajikistan enjoyed greater possession, but could not make inroads into the Syria box. Despite keeping its playmaker Firas Alkhatib on the bench in the first half, its two men in attack — Shadi Al Hamwi and Mohammad Almarmour — troubled the Tajik defence a lot.

After Hamvi saw his 13th minute effort saved well by Tajik goalkeeper Rustam Yatimov, Syria kept working on the flanks, earning three golden opportunities, but failing to make the most of them.

Tajikistan came back strongly in the second half, going ahead immediately after the break. Tursunov found the target off a spectacular long-ranger that beat Syrian custodian Ibrahim Alma.

Even before Syria could regroup, Tajiks doubled the lead in the 67th minute when Ilhomjon Barotov tapped home an assist from Panshanbe Ehsoni.

The result: Tajikistan 2 (Komron Tursunov 46, Ilhomjon Barotov 67) bt Syria 0.

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Printable version | Feb 21, 2020 3:57:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/tajikistan-stuns-syria/article28364130.ece

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