China beat Indonesia in Asia Cup

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> An injury time equaliser from Mohamed Hubail gave Bahrain a 1-1 draw with Qatar in their 2004 Asian Cup Group A match in Beijing.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:07 IST
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An injury time equaliser from Mohamed Hubail gave Bahrain a 1-1 draw with Qatar in their 2004 Asian Cup Group A match in Beijing on Wednesday, and kept alive their hopes of advancing to the knockout stage. Qatar, who had fired head coach Philippe Troussier on Tuesday following last weekend's loss to Indonesia, couldn't hold on after opening the scoring in the 58th minute, and are now looking a doubtful prospect for the last eight. Host China's hopes for advancement received a major boost in the second match of the day when they defeated Indonesia 5-0 on the strength of two goals from 1860 Munich midfielder Shao Jiayi, and a one-man advantage secured after Indonesia's Alexander Pulalo was sent off before half-time. The win put China top of the Group A table on four points, followed by Indonesia with three, Bahrain on two and bottom dwellers Qatar on one, with only the top two advancing to the quarter-finals. Caretaker coach leads Qatar One day after firing head coach Philippe Troussier following a 2-1 defeat by Indonesia, Qatar caretaker coach Saeed Al-Misned led the side against Bahrain for their second Asia Cup Group A match in Beijing. After a lacklustre first-half, things finally heated up in the second period. In the 55th minute, Bahrain created their best chance on goal, but Talal Yusof couldn't get enough on the header. Less than three minutes later, Qatar's Seyd Ali Bechir was brought down inside the penalty area at the other end by Bahrain's Hassan Al-Mosawi. A booking for Al-Mosawi was made worse by the obvious anger of his team mates. Wesam Rizik stepped up to take the penalty and beat Bahrain goalkeeper Ali Saeed low to his left. Bahrain turned up the pressure, looking for an equaliser, and almost got it with just under ten minutes on the clock. However, A'ala Hubail and Duaij Naser got in each other's way and the chance went begging. But as injury time began, Bahrain finally drew level when a hopeful long ball from their skipper Mohamed Juma was headed in by Mohamed Hubail. Less than three minutes later, Bahrain missed a golden opportunity to steal all three points when Duaij Nasr's shot was spilled by Qatari 'keeper Qusem Burham. The ball fell into the path of A'ala Hubail, but somehow Burham recovered to deflect the ball behind. The final whistle blew soon after and both sides had to settle for a draw. The result left Qatar still stranded at the bottom of the table on one point, while Bahrain gained their second from two draws. A win in their final game against Indonesia would see them through to the quarter-finals. Emphatic win for China Hosts China faced Group A table-toppers Indonesia in the second match of the night. Needing a win, China had the best of the early chances including this shot by Zhao Junzhe from a free kick in the 17th minute that Indonesia keeper Hendro Kartiko did well to punch away. But in the 25th minute, China finally opened their account when Shao Jiayi crossed from the right and Li Jinyu produced an emphatic finish. More trouble for Indonesia came less than five minutes later when Alexander Pulalo was penalised for this hard tackle on China's Zhao Junzhe. A little too hard, according to Lebanese referee Najm Talaat, who promptly sent the Persib Bandung midfielder off, having shown a first yellow card to Pulalo just thirteen minutes earlier. Indonesia were down to ten men with almost an hour left to play and the advantage told. China quickly went to work. In the 40th minute, veteran Chinese marksman Hao Haidong found the back of the net with a diving header from Shao Jiayi to make it 2-0 to China heading to the break. Five minutes after the restart, the Indonesian misery continued when their goalkeeper Hendro Kartiko flapped at a corner and put through his own goal - 3-0. But China weren't finished yet. In the 66th minute, Shao Jiayi grabbed his second of the match when the 1860 Munich midfielder beat Hendro with a deft volley with the outside of his left foot. 4-0 China. Then with ten minutes left in the game, China put the final icing on the cake when a ball from Yan Song was headed in by Li Yi. China took a giant stride toward the last eight with a 5-0 win, but Indonesia are still not out of it. The final Asian Cup Group A matches will be played on Sunday, July 25th with hosts China facing winless Qatar in Beijing and Bahrain taking on Indonesia simultaneously in the city of Jinan. (AP)