Syria reach Nehru Cup final
Mohammad Al Zino struck what turned out to be in the winner after 23 minutes. Syria's victory means they qualify for the final with nine points from three matches.
India have six from three and need only a draw in their last league match against Syria on Saturday to qualify, while Sri Lanka could still progress if they beat Kyrgyzstan tomorrow and India lose to Syria on Saturday.
Lebanon had needed a victory against Syria to stay in contention and dominated early in the game as Syria were forced to desperately defend for much of the first quarter. But Syria soon gathered momentum and brought some pressure to bear which resulted in them taking the lead.
A cross from the left should have been cleared by the Lebanon defence, but instead the ball slipped to Al Zino, who duly found the back of the net from close range. The goal took the fizz out of Lebanon and Syria were content to sit on their solitary goal advantage.
Lebanon went close to finding an equaliser immediately after the resumption in the second half, but Abdul Fattah Alaga's header was off target. The second half turned into a scrappy battle but the Syrians maintained their advantage.