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Tiebreaker Times

2019 SEA Games

Dennis Chung thrills as Azkals U22 salvage draw vs Cambodia

It was not the dream start that the Philippines Under-22 National Men’s Football Team wanted, but it could be the beginning of a memorable campaign nonetheless.

In front of 2,890 fans at the historic Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila, the Philippines earned a draw versus Cambodia, 1-1, on Monday night in both teams’ first clash at the Men’s Football Tournament of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.

The result means that the Filipinos and Cambodians have a point each in Group A. Earlier in the day, Malaysia and Myanmar fought out a 1-1 stalemate.

And the Azkals have Dennis Chung to thank.

The Filipinos found salvation in stoppage time when their perseverance paid off with substitute midfielder Chung’s strike from close range.

It was the perfect reward for the home side’s exploits in the second half. It also means that they won’t go home empty-handed.

I’m so grateful. I’m so happy to score my first goal and in my debut, only played 5 minutes but it’s enough,” said Chung. “I’m always thinking my way because I’m not giving a s*** about everything. I’m just playing my game.

Despite being the away side, Cambodia looked more comfortable on the ball, and looked very threatening against the Philippines. With such a dangerous opponent, every chance mattered for the Filipinos. Unfortunately, they squandered a good one deep in the first period when Chima Uzoka headed skipper Stephan Schrock’s cross painfully wide.

The Cambodians responded efficiently, as striker Reung Bunhieng’s attempt was denied by the post, much to the relief of Milosevic’s men. However, there was no respite moments later when Keo Sokhpeng coolly turned in the ball past goalkeeper Anthony Pinthus in the 41st minute.

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Come the second half, the Azkals mounted more chances on Cambodia’s goal, which painfully missed the target. Midfielders Dylan De Bruycker and Stephan Schrock both had sniffs at goal, but their attempts failed to get past goalie Keo Sorsela. The Filipinos were much better in this frame, but they struggled to find that elusive goal.

Chung finally found the equalizer after Schrock showed tenacity to retain possession. The German-based footballer caught the ball on his right foot, sending it low under Sorsela to level the score.

Both teams had a few more minutes to snatch a win, but the Philippines hung on for the draw.

Up next for the Philippines is a clash against Myanmar on November 27, 2019, 4:00 PM at the same venue. On the other hand, Cambodia plays Timor Leste afterwards at 8:00 PM.

Philippines XI: Pinthus (GK), Suerti, Aguinaldo, Baas, Diano, Gayoso, Marzan, De Bruycker, Schrock ©, Gallantes, Uzoka.

Cambodia XI: Soksela (GK), Muslim, Meng, Vesly, Safy, Sokpheng, Sovann, Bunhieng, Chanpolin ©, Pisal, Rosib.

Written By

Lorenzo's a frustrated author who knows a thing or two about Football and Basketball. Went all green from Ortigas to Taft. Supports Liverpool FC, FC Bayern Munich and the Alaska Aces

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