A third successive defeat decided by a goal conceded in stoppage time saw Cambodia become the first team to be eliminated from the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy in Brunei.
Januario Da Costa De Jesus came off the bench on Wednesday night to score the game’s only goal, a stunning long-range effort in the 92nd minute, for regional minnows East Timor during their Group B match at the Track & Field Sports Complex in Bandar Seri Begawan.
According to the Brunei news website www.brudirect.com, Cambodia had a golden opportunity in the 19th minute when striker Teab Vathanak was clumsily brought down in the box by Timorese defender Raul Dias Monteiro Isac.
Prak Mony Udom stepped up to take the penalty, only to see his weak effort easily parried away by Emerson Carlos Cesario.
In a shocking repeat of their two previous matches at the U23 friendly competition, the Cambodian back line suffered a late lapse in concentration.
Goalkeeper Sou Yaty, in his first appearance at the tournament, was rendered useless as De Jesus capitalised on some slack defending to unleash an unstoppable drive.
Meanwhile, Vietnam grabbed top spot in Group B after beating hosts Brunei 2-1 at the Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Stadium.
Vietnam have seven points, one ahead of surprise package East Timor, with Brunei back in third on three points and Malaysia on one.
All teams except Cambodia, who have their last chance to register a result on Monday against Malaysia, are still in with a mathematical chance of advancing to Wednesday’s semifinals.
All matches kickoff at 7:15pm Cambodian time
Friday March 2
Laos v Myanmar
Philippines v Singapore
Saturday March 3
Vietnam v East Timor
Brunei v Malaysia
Sunday March 4
Indonesia v Philippines
Myanmar v Singapore