Defending champions Pahang made a strong start to the Malaysia Cup title defence on Wednesday after claiming a 4-0 win over Johor Darul Ta’zim II in Group A.
After a lengthy delay at the Darulmakmur Stadium due to torrential rain, it was Tok Gajah who hit the ground running as they took the lead after five minutes; Matias Conti breaking free and drawing Anis Faron out of goal before playing the ball back to leave Dickson Nwakaeme with a simple tap-in.
Seven minutes before halftime, Conti doubled his side’s advantage as he got the slightest of touches on the ball to put it over the line after Faizol Hussein had nodded a cross into his path.
Nwakaeme then effectively ended the contest when he added a third for the hosts in the 73rd minute with a powerful header, after he had been picked out unmarked inside the box by Azamuddin Akil’s corner.
But Pahang were still not done and completed the rout in the third minute of injury-time as Nwakaeme turned provider on this occasion by playing a lovely chipped pass to release Fauzi Roslan, who coolly flicked his shot past the onrushing Anis.
In the other Group A clash, LIONSXII played out a 0-0 draw with FELDA United at the Jalan Besar Stadium.
Over in Group C, Super League champions Johor Darul Ta’zim got off to a winning start by claiming a 1-0 win over Kelantan at the Larkin Stadium.
The only goal of the game came in the 72nd minute when Jasazrin Jamaluddin charged through the middle before playing a through-ball to Safiq Rahim, who made no mistake in firing the winner past Khairul Fahmi.
The result allowed Harimau Selatan to move top of the group after ATM and Penang played out a 1-1 draw at the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang Stadium.
The Armed Forces had taken the lead in the 25th minute when Hairuddin Omar opened the scoring, but Rafiuddin Roddin struck on the stroke of halftime to earn the visitors a share of the spoils.
Finally, Group D action also kicked off on Wednesday as Selangor came from behind to beat T-Team 2-1 at the Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium.
Following a goalless first half, it was the Titans who edged ahead when Indonesian forward Patrich Wanggai found the back of the net four minutes into the second half.
Nonetheless, his compatriot Andik Vermansyah equalised for the Red Giants in the 51st minute and just five minutes later, Paulo Rangel netted what proved to be the winning goal to hand them maximum points.
Wednesday’s Malaysia Cup Results
LIONSXII 0-0 FELDA United
Pahang 4-0 Johor Darul Ta’zim II
ATM 1-1 Penang
Johor Darul Ta’zim 1-0 Kelantan
T-Team 1-2 Selangor