India beat Singapore, book knockout berth

Guangzhou: India qualified for the knockout stage of the Asian Games football competition for the first time since 1982 after outplaying Singapore 4-1 here on November 11.

India fired in three quick goals in the second half to register its first win in the tournament which helped the team finish third in Group D with three points.

India made it to the knockout round of 16 on better goal difference. In 2002 and 2006, it had missed out on the knockout rounds on goal difference.
In another match, defending champions Qatar beat Kuwait 2-0 to top Group D with seven points from two wins and a draw.

Kuwait finished second in the group with six points from two wins.

Jewel Raja (13th), Balwant Singh (62nd), Khagembam Jibon Singh (67th) and Maithani (75th) scored for India while Lou Zhenlun reduced the margin for Singapore in the 83rd minute.

“I am proud of my boys. They played the best match of the tournament. It is nice feeling if we have qualified for the round of 16 though the group matches are yet to be over,” Sukhvinder said after the match.

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