Champs Kuwait SC impress
Defending champions Kuwait SC sounded out a warning to the rest of the AFC Cup hopefuls as they sealed first place in Group B with a 7-1 demolition of Churchill Brothers.
Khaled Agab was the star of the show at Kuwait SC Stadium with four goals, while two from Rogerio Coutinho and a Rodrigo Vergilio strike completed the rout. Nascimento Silveria grabbed Churchill Brothers' goal but despite the emphatic defeat the Indians also progress to the last 16 as they finished second in the standings.
Kuwait SC will host Al Ittihad of Syria in the next round in a fortnight while Churchill Brothers travel to Kuwait to face Al Qadsia. "We achieved the top spot in the group and this was our target before the game," said Kuwait SC coach Mohammed Abdullah. "This is our natural position in the group as we are the defending champions and we should have good results."
Elsewhere, Al Karamah took first place in Group A after the Syria league champions drew 1-1 with fellow qualifiers Shabab Al Ordon at Khaled Ibn Al Waleed Stadium. The visitors opened the scoring in the first minute through Mohamad Khier but Al Karamah equalised after 39 minutes through Haani Al Taiar.
The draw means Al Karamah will host Uzbekistan's Nasaf in the last 16 while Shabab Al Ordon travel to Kuwait to face Kazma. Ahli Sana'a of Yemen drew 2-2 with Saham in the group's other game, with both side's already eliminated from the tournament.
In east Asia, Indonesia's Sriwijaya sealed first place in Group F by demolishing Selangor 4-0 at Shah Alam Stadium. Keith Gumbs scored twice while Richard Obiora and Ponyaro Astaman also got on the scoresheet. The victory means Sriwijaya will host Thai Port in the one-off last 16 match.
Meanwhile, Binh Duong finish second in the group as their 5-0 win over Victory SC at the National Stadium in the Maldives was not enough to usurp Sriwijaya and the Vietnam side will play local rivals Da Nang in the next round.