Pahang stayed one point clear at the top of the Malaysia Super League on Saturday evening after recording a 2-0 win over T-Team at the Darulmakmur Stadium.
It took Tok Gajah just three minutes to open the scoring when Matias Conti found the back of the net, before Azamuddin Akil wrapped up the three points with his first goal of the season in the 57th minute.
The win, Pahang’s fifth in a row, ensured they remain league leaders at least until Tuesday’s round of matches.
Selangor are their closest challengers at the moment as they remain a point behind after claiming a hard-fought 1-0 win over bottom side Perak at the Shah Alam Stadium.
The Red Giants got off to a dream start when Paulo Rangel broke the deadlock with his tenth goal of the campaign, pouncing on a loose ball after opposition midfielder Kyaw Zayar Win lost possession in midfield and advancing on goal before rifling a shot into the top corner.
However, they were dealt a blow just before halftime when Brazilian defender Evaldo was sent off on debut after appearing to catch Zayar Win with his elbow in an aerial challenge.
But despite the numerical advantage, Perak failed to show any desire in mounting a comeback and they were also reduced to ten men in the 65th minute when Raffi Nagoorgani received a red card for a second bookable offence, which helped the hosts play out the remainder of the match for the win.
Over at the Jalan Besar Stadium, defending champions LIONSXII slumped to their fourth defeat of the season as they were beaten 1-0 by Sime Darby.
The visitors took the lead on the stroke of halftime when Fahrul Razi Kamaruddin’s corner was met with a sweet volley from Syukur Saidin that sent the ball straight into the back of the net.
While they enjoyed plenty of possession, the LIONSXII struggled to create a real clear-cut chance until injury-time when Faritz Hameed had a header at the far post cleared off the line.
The Singaporean outfit vehemently protested that the ball had crossed the line but replays showed the officials were correct not to award a goal, as Sime Darby went on to claim all three points.
Finally, Kelantan continued their steady rise up the table and are now fourth following a 2-0 win over ATM.
Although there was not much separating the two sides in the opening 45 at the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang Stadium, it was the Red Warriors who went into the break ahead thanks to Badhri Radzi’s 44th-minute opener.
And six minutes from time, Liberia international Francis Forkey Doe notched his third goal of the season to put the result beyond doubt and pile more misery on the Armed Forces, who remain second from bottom and in real danger of relegation.
Saturday’s Malaysia Super League Results
LIONSXII 0-1 Sime Darby
ATM 0-2 Kelantan
Pahang 2-0 T-Team
Selangor 1-0 Perak