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Nov 26 - Dec 8, 2019
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Bahrain defeat Iran in Group ‘B’ thriller

Qatar to take on Saudi Arabia in their last Group 'A' game on Monday.
Bahrain Proved Too Good For Iran In The Asian Olympic Qualifying Tournament. Photo Qatar Handball Association
Bahrain proved too good for Iran in the Asian Olympic Qualifying Tournament. Photo: Qatar Handball Association

Bahrain edged past arch rivals Iran 29-26 in their second Group B match of the Asian Olympic Qualifying Tournament at the Al Duhail Indoor Hall on Sunday. The victors led 15-13 at half-time.

The match was an exciting affair with the teams battling hard to gain the upper hand. They matched each other goal for goal, but their desire to end up on the winning side saw players from both teams violating the rules. This resulted in red cards.

Iran’s Mehrdad Samsami was dismissed after amassing three two-minute suspensions (28th minute) and Bahrain’s Mohamed Abdulredha was given marching orders for a rough tackle on Nosrati in the 46th.

It did not tell on the quality of the game though as the teams continued to fight hard and the spectators got to witness an enjoyable encounter.

Ahmed Fadhul (six goals) and Salman Ali (five) were Bahrain’s leading scorers while Merza Ali, Hasan Alsamahiji, Mohamed Merza and Jasim Alsalatna scored thrice each.

Iran, on the other hand, seemed to be overdependent on Milad Ghalandari (eight) and Shahoo Nosrati (five).

Bahrain Moved To The Top Of Group B With A Win Against Iran. Photo Qatar Handball Association
Bahrain moved to the top of Group B with a win against Iran. Photo: Qatar Handball Association

Bahrain, with four points from two matches, are on top of Group B. Iran have two points along with South Korea who overcame Kuwait 36-32 earlier in the day. Iran are in second place with a better head-to-head record. Winless Kuwait remain at the bottom.

On Monday, Qatar play their final Group A game against regional rivals Saudi Arabia at 6pm. In another match, India take on Hong Kong in the battle of the minnows.