Afghanistan claimed their second win in the 2017 AFC Beach Soccer Championship after whipping China PR 7-2 in Group A in Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia on Sunday.
It was a hard-fought contest between the two sides after Afghanistan’s encouraging 5-3 opening win over hosts Malaysia while China lost 5-0 to inaugural winners Bahrain on Saturday.
It was Afghanistan’s Sami Ullah Mohammadi who opened the scoring on three minutes, his first in the competition, following an even battle for possession in the early phase of of the game.
China Skipper Cai Weiming then took a free-kick close to to the post after a handball by his Afghan counterpart Zainuddin Sharifi but keeper Baktash Akbari denied the Chinese an equaliser.
The Chinese levelled matters on 11 minutes thanks to Qiu Hao but Raof Qaderi regained the Afghans’ lead with his fourth goal in the tournament a minute later.
Sharifi then brought it up to 3-1 for Afghanistan as his strike bounced off keeper Jiang Wen Tao’s feet and into the net, but China scored their second goal barely a minute later through Liu Yi-si’s first.
Mohammadi then registered his second in the match before Qaderi extended the Rohullah Rastagar-led side’s lead with his fifth in the competition on nine minutes.
The Chinese played a little laid back in their own area come the third period in order to create clear chances but it was Qaderi who scored the period’s first with an easy lob past captain Cai who had switched role to that of keeper.
Hamidullah Gulzar then bulged China’s net to register Afghanistan’s seventh goal which helped the side’s clinch their second three points in the group.
The top three finishers at the AFC Beach Soccer Championship will represent Asia at the 2017 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in in Nassau, Bahamas from April 27 to May 7.