Tanjong Pagar United 2 (Asraf Rashid 39’, Hafiz Nor 68’)
Warriors FC 1 (Sufian Anuar 37’)
Photo Credit: Ismadi Hussain
After a disappointing two weeks, Tanjong Pagar United got back to winning ways at the Queenstown Stadium last night as they clinched a well-fought 2-1 victory over the Warriors FC.
In a match that saw the return of Kazuyuki Toda to the starting line-up for the Warriors, it was Sufian Anuar who opened the scoring in the first half, before Asraf Rashid equalised moments later in front of 1,503 Jaguar fans.
It would be Tanjong Pagar winger Hafiz Nor who would grab the winner, as he lifted his side to third in the table with 24 points, and condemn the Warriors to their sixth loss of the season and one place off the bottom.
GET OFF THE MARK
Both teams took their time to get off the mark, with the first chance coming only after the tenth minute mark when Hafiz sliced his volley wide of the target.
It took the Jaguars another ten minutes to carve open the away side again when Hafiz volleyed Monsef Zerka’s flick past the wrong side of the right post.
The Warriors were able to have a sniff at goal in the 26th minute, with Abdil Qaiyyim nodding Shi JIayi’s free kick just wide of Shamsudin Hashim’s goal.
It was a sign of things to come, as V Selvaraj’s men took a surprise lead in the 37th minute after Sufian swung a brilliant top corner shot from outside the box to put his side ahead.
But the hosts ended the half in dramatic fashion when they equalised just a minute later when Hafiz’s deflected shot fell into the path of winger Asraf inside the box, who made no mistake as he slotted home to make it 1-1.
In the second half, Tanjong Pagar got things going nine minutes from the restart, when Hassan Sunny tipped over Kamel Ramdani’s pin-point free kick.
The Warriors then had two chances in the next ten minutes, with Mislav Karoglan and Jiayi both shooting wide from outside the box.
But it would prove to be fruitless as the Jaguars retook the lead in the 68th minute, when Hafiz raced onto Zerka’s well-weighted through pass to dink it over an onrushing Hassan.
The hosts were able to repel a brief Warriors onslaught, and Ismael Benahmed responded on 78 minutes by smashing Hassan’s right-hand post with a fierce drive.
They had a short scare just a few moments later, but had Shamsudin to thank as he raced to deny Karoglan.
Early into stoppage time, Karoglan wasted a glorious chance to draw things level, as he scuffed an Abdil header wide of Shamsudin’s goal.
The Jaguars nearly finished the tie in style when Hafiz received Zerka’s intelligent backheel, but he was less clinical as he stroked it harmlessly past Hassan’s goal.
Tanjong Pagar United: Shamsudin Hashim (GK), Zahid Ahmad, Anthony Aymard, Azhar Ahmad (Hanafi Salleh 76’), Asraf Rashid (K Vikraman 93’), Ahmad Latiff (C), Ismael Benahmed, Kamel Ramdani, Hafiz Nor, Monsef Zerka, Sazali Salleh
Warriors FC Starting XI: Hassan Sunny (GK), Zulfadli Zainal Abidin, Kazuyuki Toda, Abdil Qaiyyim, Mislav Karoglan, Sufian Anuar, Marin Vidosevic, Ruzaini Zainal (Prakash Manikam 70’), Erwan Gunawan, Daniel Bennett (C), Shi Jiayi
Yellow Cards: Asraf Rashid 28’, Zahid Ahmad 58’, Ahmad Latiff 77’ (Tanjong Pagar), Mislav Karoglan 58’ , Abdil Qaiiyim 84’ , Sufian Anuar 87’ , Zulfadli Zainal Abidin 89’, Ruzaini Zainal 40’ (Warriors)