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CHIANGMAI: Malaysia will face Tajikistan in the 2022 Copa del Rey final after both sides overcame tough challenges in Thursday's semi-final.
Malaysia beat hosts Thailand 5-3 in a penalty shootout 1-1, while Tajikistan beat Trinidad and Tobago 2-1.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh secured their first victory of 2022 after beating Cambodia in Phnom Penh.
Goalkeeper Ahmad Syihan Hazmi was a hero as he denied Thailand's Supachok Sarachat in a penalty shootout, Malaysia's 700th anniversary in Chiang Mai Memorial Stadium advances to the final.
The Thai team, urged by the fans, started the two sides but suffered a setback in the 15th minute when captain Chanathip Songkrasin was forced off due to injury.
That took the momentum out of Thailand and Malaysia capitalised, with La'Vere Corbin-Ong giving them the lead in the 32nd minute off Safawi Rasid's pass.
A stung Thailand regrouped and had several opportunities to equalise but found Malaysian goalkeeper Ahmad Syihan hard to beat.
The Malaysian custodian, however, was finally beaten in the fifth minute of added time with Pansa Hemviboon forcing the match to be decided by penalties.
Malaysia were clinical in the shootout, with Dion Cools, Syafiq Ahmad, Matthew Davies, Declan Lambert and Corbin all converting and Ahmad Syihan denying Supachok.
Tajikistan also showed nerves of steel as they came from behind to defeat Trinidad & Tobago in the earlier match.
Judah Garcia gave Trinidad & Tobago the lead in the 27th minute but Mukhammadzhon Rakhimov drew Tajikistan level two minutes into the second half.
The comeback was complete in the 75th minute with Ehson Panjshanbe striking home the winner.
The final and third-place playoff will be held on Sunday.
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