Ashgabat: An exciting match awaits on Saturday as Islamic Republic of Iran will face Thailand in the quarter-finals of the Ashgabat 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games men’s futsal.
IR Iran booked their place after beating Kyrgyz Republic 10-0 on Thursday to top Group D as Japan avoided facing the defending champions by beating Thailand 6-4 in Group C.
IR Iran’s Saeid Ahmadabbasi and Farhad Tavakoli stole the show with eight goals between them while Ahmad Esmaeilpour scored the 10th goal a minute before the final whistle.
Saeid finished with five goals scoring in the ninth,11th, 18th, 23rd and 32nd minutes while Farhad fired three in the 17th, 24th and 34th minutes.
Kyrgyz Republic’s Dilshat Kadyrov conceded an own goal in the 27th minute.
Saeid who has scored six goals in the competition, says his teammates are focused on their fifth title.
“Every match we played against Thailand has always been difficult and very hard. We are concentrated on the next one and we have to remember we are the (reigning) champions and we came here to win one more time,” said Saeid.
“It doesn’t matter which team is on our way. We are just concentrated and focussed on the title,” he added.
Japan, meanwhile, survived a late fightback from Thailand to top their group as they face Jordan – who beat Tahiti 3-0 in their last group match – in the last eight.
Japan led 2-1 at halfime with goals from Kasho Tamura in the fifth minute and Yuki Murota (14th) as Suphawut Thueanklang pulled one back with a penalty strike in the 13th minute.
The Samurai Five added three more after the break through Atsuya Uemura (22nd), Takashi Morimura (26th) and Saito Koichi (30th), to give them a 5-1 lead.
Thailand tried to claw their way back with a late fightback as Muhammad Osamanmusa scored a brace in the 30th and 33rd while his goalkeeper Jirawat Sornwichian scored in the 34th minute to put the score at 5-4.
But the 2013 runners-up were not shaken as they silenced their opponents in 36th minute through Shimizu Kazuya as Japan held on to win 6-4.
IR Iran v Thailand
Japan v Jordan
Afghanistan/Uzbekistan v Vietnam/Solomon Islands
Turkmenistan/Vietnam v Afghanistan/Uzbekistan/UAE
Hong Kong x-x Chinese Taipei
Turkmenistan x-x Vietnam
Vietnam 2-1 Solomon Islands
Chinese Taipei 1-5 Turkmenistan
Vietnam 8-0 Hong Kong
Turkmenistan 4-2 Solomon Islands
Solomon Islands 4-3 Chinese Taipei
Hong Kong 1-7 Turkmenistan
Chinese Taipei 2-1 Vietnam
Solomon Islands 4-1 Hong Kong
UAE x-x Afghanistan
Uzbekistan x-x China PR
China PR 9-3 Maldives
Afghanistan 4-2 Uzbekistan
China PR 1-5 UAE
Uzbekistan 9-1 Maldives
Maldives 1-6 Afghanistan
UAE 1-5 Uzbekistan
Afghanistan 6-1 China PR
Maldives 1-3 UAE
Thailand 4-6 Japan
Lebanon 2-5 Thailand
Japan 5-2 Lebanon
IR Iran 10-0 Kyrgyz Republic
Jordan 3-0 Tahiti
Tahiti 2-4 Kyrgyz Republic
Jordan 3-7 IR Iran
IR Iran16-1 Tahiti
Kyrgyz Republic 1-7 Jordan