Guangzhou narrow gap in thriller

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 23 August, 1994, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 23 August, 1994, 12:00am

Guangzhou narrowed the gap at the top of China's Marlboro League with a stunning 3-2 victory over leaders Dalian.

A 71st-minute winner through Peng Changying sealed the points for the home side after the teams had gone in level at half-time.

Guangzhou had raced to a 2-0 lead against table-topping Dalian with goals in the 20th minute from Peng Weiguo and in the 33rd minute from Hu Zhijun - the league's top scorer with 14 goals.

But Dalian pulled level before the break, though, Xu Hui (39) and Shi Lei (44).

A capacity 38,000 crowd watched Guangzhou narrow the gap at the top of the 12-team table to two points, just as Dalian threatened to run away with the inaugural championship.

Dalian remain top with 23 points from 16 matches. Guangzhou are second with 21, followed by Liaoning and Sichuan, both of whom have 19.

Sichuan were held to a 0-0 draw by the Army team in front of another full house - 41,000 - in Chengdu.

Liaoning moved ahead of Sichuan on goal difference after their 4-3 win away at Shenyang.

In Japan, Verdy Kawasaki are on the march after a disappointing start to the second J.League season.

Verdy, who beat Kashima Antlers in the championship play-off to win the inaugural league title last January, finished fourth in the first stage of this second season.

But after losing their first match in the second series of fixtures, Verdy have strung together three successive victories to move into third place in the 12-team table.

Their latest victory - 1-0 against the Yokohama Marinos in Kawasaki City - was earned by a 15th-minute goal from their Brazilian striker, Bentinho.

With Verdy ending Marinos' unbeaten record in the second stage of the J.League, the only team with maximum points after four rounds are first-stage champions Sanfrecce Hiroshima.

Playing away to Urawa Red Diamonds, Sanfrecce won 2-0 with goals from Czech striker Ivan Hasek and South Korean international Noh Jung-yoon.

Hasek, formerly with Strasbourg, stands third in the goal-scorers' chart with 17, three behind Kashima Antlers' Brazilian marksman, Alcindo, and two behind Jef United Ichihara's German forward, Frank Ordenewitz.

Alcindo's 20th goal of the season could not stop Antlers going down 2-1 to Shimizu S-Pulse in front of 50,724 fans in Tokyo's National Stadium.

Antlers, who won the first stage of the first J.League season last year, are the only team without a win in the second stage of this campaign.

In the South Korean professional league, champions and leaders Ilhwa Chonma were held to a 1-1 draw away to the Yukong Elephants but still hold a seven-point advantage at the top.

Ilhwa have 34 points from 17 matches, seven ahead of second-placed Hyundai, who drew 0-0 against the Posco Atoms.

Bottom-of-the-table Jeon-Buk Buffaloes recorded only their second victory of the season, beating Daewoo Royals 4-3 after leading 4-1 after 40 minutes.

The big match in the Malaysian Premier League saw Singapore beat Kedah 2-1 in fornt of 60,000 fans in the National Stadium, Singapore.

The victory, thanks to two goals from skipper Fandi Ahmad, swept Singapore to the top of the table with only one round of fixtures to go.

Singapore have 59 points from 29 games and Kedah drop to second with 57.

They can clinch their first Malaysian League title today, when they are away to bottom club Brunei.

A draw would be good enough to give the Lions the championship.