By: Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
Just when the Filipino fans thought the PH under-22 team was about to lose the opener of the 2019 SEA games against the tough Cambodian squad, late-game substitute Dennis Chung electrified and revived the souls of the PH football nation after a clutch conversion in the extra time.
After a Stephan Shrock penetration, a stagnant Chung who was just standing inside the box found the ball approaching his way.
In dire need of an attempt, Chung surveyed the post with a quick look, gathered the ball, and fired a rapid kick that stunned the Cambodian team and made the Rizal Memorial Stadium go into a frenzy.
Cambodia’s speed and chemistry made it hard for PH to contain them defensively, as they seemed to outrun the national team in several possessions with their pitch familiarity.
Cambodia scored their lone goal in the 40th minute with a beautiful set play where Keo Sekphong fooled his defender with fluid fakes and lateral quickness that looked like poetry in motion.
PH had numerous chances to equalize in the second half but Cambodia’s speed helped them recover several times against the PH offense.
The match between Myanmar and Malaysia also ended in a 1-1 draw.