AFC final: North Korea to play Japan

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:37 IST

North Korea and Japan made their way into the final with narrow victories over their rivals in the AFC Youth championship football.

AFC final: North Korea to play Japan

Kolkata:

North Korea and Japan made their way into the final with narrow victories over their rivals in the AFC Youth championship football in Kolkata on Thursday. Goalkeeper Akihiro Hayashi emerged the hero by saving two spot kicks, as Japan upset defending champions South Korea 3-2 in sudden death tie-break in the day's first semi final. Later, North Korea rode on a first half goal by Kum Il Kim to get the better of Jordan and move into the title round. The spectacular winner came in the 38th minute through Kum Il Kim, who capped a fine solo with a lethal finish. Receiving a long clearance from his own defence, the unmarked Kim dodged past a Jordan defender and launched on a long run, making full use of the large vacant space before him. As the Jordan goalkeeper came out of his charge, Kim outwitted him with a deft footwork, and kept his cool to place the ball hime even as a defender was breathing down his neck. The North Koreans were deserving winners, as they dominated the match with their quick bursts of speed and superior ball control. In the first match, Hayashi blocked Choi Chul-soon's penalty after the exciting contest moved into the climactic tie-break as the two sides finished regulation time with a 1-1 deadlock, and remained 2-2 at the end of half an hour of extra time at the floodlit Salt Lake Stadium. Tsukasa Umesaki, Yasuhito Morishima and Kota Aoki converted for the winners in the tie-break, while Yosuke Kashiwagi hit the bar and Masato Morishige's effort was thwarted by Korean custodian Jo Su Huk. (PTI)



Topics : Football Formula 1
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