2015 Asia Cup: Birthday boy gives China hope over Saudis

Wang saves penalty to deny three-time champions any solace


Afp January 10, 2015
Victory put a huge smile on the faces of Alain Perrin's China, who have never won the Asian Cup. PHOTO: AFP

SYDNEY: Birthday boy Wang Dalei's penalty stop helped China upset Saudi Arabia 1-0 as a string of top saves made all the difference at the Asian Cup on Saturday.

Surprise result of the day belonged to China, who edged three-time winners Saudi Arabia in Brisbane courtesy of Yu Hai's deflected second-half free kick.

Just moments before the goal, Wang, who was celebrating his 26th birthday, kept China in it when he dived to his left to save Naif Hazazi's tame penalty.

Victory put a huge smile on the faces of Alain Perrin's China, who have never won the Asian Cup and will now be eyeing their first appearance in the knockout stages since hosting the tournament in 2004.

Meanwhile in the other match, goalkeeper Ignatiy Nesterov's lightning late save spared Uzbekistan's blushes as the 2011 semi-finalists beat North Korea 1-0 in a rain-hit Asian Cup clash.

 

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