Rhinos notch first win

source : New Sabah Times

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah put up an improved performance to snatch their first win after defeating Johor FC 2-1 in a Malaysia Cup Group B challenge at the Likas Stadium last night.

The comeback victory eventually put Sabah back on track for a place in the next round. Striker Salvester Sindeh was the hero of the night for the Rhinos by scoring the winner before turning villain when he was sent off in the dying seconds of the game.

NEW SIGNING … Sabah’s David Njoku (red) challenges for the ball with Johor FC skipper Wan Rohaimi Ismail as former Rhinos’ custodian G. Jeevanatham tries to stop the ball during the Malaysia Cup Group B clash at the Likas Stadium last night. – PIC

The visiting Johor FC stunned the Rhinos when their hitman Andres Fuentes Gustavo drew first blood in the 28th minute by slotting home a grounder. It started when See Kok Luen was left unmarked inside the penalty box. He then fed Fuentes who easily defeated the hapless Sabah custodian Irwan Jamil from close range.

But a spectacular free-kick from about 30 metres by Hisamuddin Othman put Sabah on level terms in the 36th minute. In the first-half injury time, Fuentes squandered the chance to restore the lead for the visitors when a loose ball found the unmarked Argentine inside the box, but it was fortunate for Sabah as his weak attempt from close range was cleared by the alert Irwan.

After the break, Sabah finally found the much needed lead when new signing David Njoku set up Salvester to go on solo after he outran a Kedah defender to go one-on-one with the keeper. Salvester coolly unleashed a grounder that defeated former Sabah custodian G. Jeevanatham. Both teams had equal chances of scoring after that, but none found the net as Salvester saw red in the 90th minute for a second yellow card offence for kicking the ball away after the referee blew for offside.

However, the three points earned was not enough for Sabah to move them out from the bottom of the six-team standings. Sabah’s next game is against reigning champions Kedah on Monday at the same venue.

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