India Will Play Against Lebanon in Semis.
Semifinals Line-Up: West Asians edge out Maldives to top group.
Skipper Hassan Maatouk led from the front as Intercontinental Cup runners-up Lebanon edged out Maldives 1-0 to top Group 'B' with an all-win record in the SAFF Championship at the Sree Kanteerava stadium here on Wednesday. In the day's second match, Bangladesh got past Bhutan 3-1 to finish second in the group. They face Kuwait, who topped Group A, in the semifinals. The other last-four fixture is between Lebanon and India. Both matches will be played on July 1. Maatouk, Lebanon's most capped player, fired in the winner with a superb free kick from the edge of the box after he was brought down by his opposite number Samooh Ali in the 23rd minute.
Five minutes later, Maldives conceded another free kick from the same distance on the left side, but this time Maatouk's powerful shot flew just over the crossbar. But the West Asians, who had six shots on target, failed to add to their scoreline as they took it easy against the Islanders. Maldives, who lost to Bangladesh in the previous match, looked a much better side and matched their rivals. But for their wayward finishing, they could have posed a more difficult challenge for Lebanon. The Islanders, trained by Italian Moriero Francesco, came into the tournament with little match practice and by the time they found their bearings it was too late. They managed 12 shots on goal, but none on target and that summer up the story.
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