Asian Games: PM Mahathir Congratulates National Under-23 Football Team


Kuala Lumpur, MINA — The sensational win of the national Under-23 squad against South Korea in the Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games 2018 Friday caught the attention of Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Bernama reported.

Through his Twitter Saturday, the prime minister congratulated the team, coached by Datuk Ong Kim Swee, for defeating South Korea 2-1.

“Congratulations to the national football squad to the Asian Games. Malaysia Boleh!,” posted Dr Mahathir, who is now in China for a five-day official visit.

In the Group E match at Si Jalak Harupat Stadium, Malaysia showed no fear against the mighty South Koreans and scored as early as the 4th minute when Muhammad Safawi Rasid pounced on a loose ball after their keeper fumbled a catch.

South Korea, who had 2018 World Cup player Hwang Hee-Chan in the team, piled on the attacks after that, but failed to make headway and it was Malaysia who again scored, through Muhammad Safawi again in the 45th minute.

Their attacks came non-stop, but Malaysian keeper Muhammad Haziq Nadzli, 23, was in top form until Hwang Ui Jo managed to get past him in the 87th minute.

It was the second win for the national Under-23 squad which put them in top spot in Group E with six points.

The team had defeated Kyrgzstan 3-1 in their opener on Wednesday.

South Korea are in second spot with three points, while Kyrgyzstan and Bahrain only have a point a piece after playing to a 2-2 draw in the second group match.

Bahrain had lost 0-6 to South Korea earlier.

Malaysia next play Bahrain in their final group match on Aug 20. (T//RS5/RS1)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)

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