A scoreless tie may have suggested a closely contested match between Malaysia and Singapore, but the Tigers were lucky to survive. Vijhay Vick dishes out the grades to Ong Kim Swee's men.
Khairul Azhan Khlid – 8
If there was one standout Malaysian on the pitch, it was none other goalkeeper Khairul Azhan. The custodian twice came to rescue when his teammates were caught ball watching.
Rizal Ghazali – 6
The Kedah youngster, who has been solid domestically all year, made his debut at right-back and perhaps convinced Ong that he should be on the plane to Myanmar as Matthew Davies’ back-up at the AFF Suzuki Cup.
Khairul Helmi Johari – 5
Making his first international appearance since 2010, the Kedah centre-back could not stabilise Malaysia’s problematic defence. Khairul was also lucky not to be cautioned after several hard tackles early in the match.
Shahrul Saad – 6
In the team after Fadhli Shas was dropped, Shahrul probably made a claim to a starting position alongside Shahrom Kalam. The Perak defender didn’t look very comfortable in the first half but he picked up his game after the break.
Nazirul Naim Che Hashim – 5
The left-back should have given a better account of himself and was beaten too many times by Singapore’s Gabriel Quak in the first half. He improved in the second half but his performance still left plenty to be desired as the player looked a shadow of the frustrated wing-back who roars down the flank in the Malaysia Super League (MSL).
Baddrol Bakhtiar – 6
Without his regular central midfielder partner in Brendan Gan, Baddrol was forced to do double duty and that didn’t go so well as he was all over the pitch. Baddrol struggled to stamp his authority in the engine room.
Irfan Fazail – 4
It was really a surprise that Irfan started and lasted almost the entire match before being taken off a few minutes before the final whistle. Irfan was largely a passenger in the team and simple failed to help Baddrol in winning the midfield battle.
Safawi Rasid - 5
Still only 19 and making his second consecutive start since his debut last month , Safawi failed to do much before getting subbed off on the hour mark.
Azrif Nasrulhaq – 6
Another player who had a tale of two halves. Azrif returned to the right-flank but did little to threaten the hosts in the first half. He looked more encouraging in the second half but it still lacked a real threat.
Ahmad Hazwan Bakri – 6
Leading the front with a non-existent midfield was never going to be easy and the lack of times he tested Hassan Sunny was unsurprising. Hazwan only had one shot on goal throughout the match and made way for debutant Darren Lok in the second-half.
Shahrom Kalam – 7
Taking to the field for the first time in over two months, Shahrom came to rescue in the second half after blocking a near shot that look destined for the back of the net. Ong will be pleased to have Shahrom back in the line-up after Aidil Zafuan Abdul Radzak’s retirement.
Hadin Azman – 5
Hadin made his debut but, like the rest of his teammates, the breakout star for Felda United failed to do much. He, however, provided cover for Nazirul on the left-flank.
Darren Lok – 5
For the all hype that surrounded Lok, his first match ended with a whimper as he did little coming on for the final third of the match. In his defence, the forward barely got support from his non-existent midfield.
Norshahrul Idlan Talaha – 7
His fitness was in question but it seems whatever special regime he is being put on by the backroom staff is paying off. The second-half substitute looked the brightest of Malaysians going forward and provided a spark after coming on the 71st minute.
Zaquan Adha Abdul Radzak – 6
The Johor Darul Ta’zim II star was efficient on the right flank after replacing the injured Azrif but there was nothing spectacular to his game. Nevertheless, he looks a cinch to make the Suzuki Cup squad because of the lack of experience in the squad.
Abdul Latiff Suhaimi – NA
The 87th minute substitute did not have enough time to make an impact.
Photos: Weixiang Lim/FourFourTwo