Pahang gave away the League title which was for their taking with their 1-3 loss to Terengganu in Kuala Terengganu while Johor DT retained the title despite losing to Felda United 1-2 at the Selayang Stadium last night.
The Elephants had no one to blame but themselves for letting go of the League trophy which was withing their grasp .
It was not only their loss last night that robbed tem of the title, but also their draws against Perak and Felda United in their earlier two matches.
Last night, as much as Pahang tried, they simply had no reply to the Turtles who relied on counter-attacks to punish them.
In the end, Pahang became desperate and even moved defender Damion Stewart upfront to assist in attack in the secondhalf,
brougt in R. Surendran for R. Gopinathan after the breather and in the 70th minute sent in D. Saaaavindran coming in for Azamuddin Akil.
Things looked brighter for Pahang when in the 47th minute, defender Damion off a corner kick scored to reduce the first half two goal deficit.
Pahang had a few chances to find the equaliser but Terengganu’s substitute Mohd Nasril Izzat dashed Pahang’s hopes in the 66th minute with an excellent
curling attempt from outside the box beating goalkeeper Md Khairul Azhan Md Khalid for a 3-1 lead.
Pahang skipper Razman agreed that they blew their chance for the title, but said that they have given their best.
“We were just unlucky to have failed to wrest the title. But still we can take consolation that we finished runners-up,” said Razman.
“Of course we are disappointed, but anything can happen in football.
“We have to forget having missed the title and now focus on our AFC Cup campaign which continues next week.
“Hopefully we will make amends in the AFC Cup and do better in the Malaysia Cup champion, which we are defending.
In the first half,not knowing Felda United was already doing them a favour with a two-goal lead over Johor DT with ten minutes of play at the Selayang Stadium, Pahang trailing by a goal to Terengganu in the 15th minute.
Pahang started the match in Kuala Terengganu aggressively going for a win and hoping Felda will do them a favour to beat JDT for them to pip the latter for the title.
Dickson Nwakaeme’s had a goal disallowed in the second minute when referee Muhammad Zamzaidi Katimin pulled him up for an infringement on Terengganu custodian Mohd Sharbinee.
Then the Turtles stunned the Elephants when Issey Nakajima converted a cross from Mohd Ashari from a counter attack.
Pahang fought back hard to get an equaliser and stay in the game, but in another counter attach Terengganu struck further disaster for Pahang in the 32nd minute.
Terengganu’s Mohd Shamsuddin Ashari was handed a golden opportunity when Pahang’s Hafiz Kamal in an effort to clear the ball, put it in front of Shamusddin to slot home.
Score at Selayang had by then changed to Felda conceding a goal but still lead 2-1.
Try as hard as they may, Pahang had to return to the dressing room with their heads down and two nil down.
Pahang had to blame themselves for the situation as Hafiz, Matias Conti and Dickson failed to make use of the chances they had.