Second-string Thais too slick for Vietnam (Bangkok POst) (1/12/2012 at 12:00 AM )



Thailand completed their group stage fixtures with a perfect record after beating Vietnam 3-1 at the AFF Suzuki Cup at Rajamangala National Stadium last night.

The co-hosts, who had already qualified for the semi-finals with two wins from the first two games, sent the Vietnamese tumbling out of the competition, despite fielding a second-string line-up.

Thailand are joined by the Philippines in the semi-finals after they beat Myanmar 2-0 in the other group game at Suphachalasai Stadium.

Kirati Kaewsombut scored twice in the 21st and 64th minutes and the third goal came from an own-goal by Vietnam's Nguyen Gia Tu.

Thailand had Arthit Sunthornphit sent off for kicking a Vietnamese player in the 70th minute. A minute later, the Vietnamese scored the first goal through Nguyen Van Quyet, who headed the ball into the net - the Thai defenders had thought it was offside.

In the 78th minute, Sumanya Purisay should have scored for Thailand but the shot was saved by the Vietnamese goalkeeper, Duong Hong Son. Thailand had their third goal in the 82nd minute, when Sumanya took the corner and the ball came off the leg of the Vietnamese defender, Nguyen Gia Tu, before going into the net. The own-goal, widening the margin to 3-1 in Thailand's favour.

In today's final Group B matches, Malaysia face Indonesia at Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore meet Laos at Shah Alam Stadium.